Matt Upshaw, currently a managing director at Serino Coyne, has been appointed chief executive of the ad agency.
He takes over the post from Angelo Desimini, who has held the role since 2015 and is leaving to join the leadership team at Disney Theatrical Group. The leadership change will take place on Nov. 17 and will not affect other positions at the agency.
Upshaw will work alongside the senior management team of Greg Corradetti, Leslie Barrett, Michael Hartman and Catherine Reid. Serino Coyne is owned by Omnicom Group Inc, and Upshaw will report to James Fenton, chief executive of the Omnicom Advertising Collective.
Desimini will join Disney Theatrical Group, a longtime client of Serino Coyne, in the new position of vice president of marketing, publicity, sales and education.
Upshaw had a circuitous path to the marketing industry. He studied civil engineering at Georgia Tech and after graduation worked for five years in the intelligence arm of the Navy, before moving to New York in search of a marketing job.
He joined Serino Coyne in 2007 as an assistant account executive, with “Hairspray” as his first client, and then moved up to group director, followed by vice president of account management and insights and then managing director.
In his tenure at Serino Coyne, Upshaw said he’s seen the agency evolve its approach to include partnership and experiential marketing experiences, as well as leaning into dynamic pricing and inventory management.
As CEO, his goal is to continue filling Broadway houses and other entertainment spaces.
“How we do it may change over time, but our focus remains the same: butts in seats,” Upshaw said in an email to Broadway News. “Whether it’s filling every seat at a limited-engagement play or shepherding the next global blockbuster, we’ve always believed in the transformative power of a shared live entertainment experience.”
Upshaw often worked with Desimini at the agency and plans to continue the relationship now that Desimini will be a client at Disney.
“It has been an incredible honor to be part of the Serino Coyne team for the last twenty years,” Desimini said. “For much of that time, Matt has been my right hand, and I can’t imagine someone better equipped to shepherd our clients and the agency into the future.”
In addition to Disney, Serino Coyne’s clients include “Wicked,” ”The Phantom of the Opera,” “Dear Evan Hansen,” “Ain’t Too Proud,” Manhattan Theatre Club, “Diana” and the Tony Awards.