‘Tasteless’ Beirut blast stamp angers Lebanese 

The country’s post office has captured the dramatic explosion in a limited edition stamp costing LBP10,000 ($6.63) with the proceedings going to the Lebanese Civil Defence. (LibanPost)
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Updated 14 October 2020

‘Tasteless’ Beirut blast stamp angers Lebanese 

LONDON: The Lebanese are trying to put the devastating Beirut blast behind them as they slowly rebuild their city, a little more than two months since the tragedy occurred.

But the country’s post office has captured the dramatic explosion in a limited edition stamp costing LBP10,000 ($6.63) with the proceedings going to the Lebanese Civil Defence, angering some people at the decision to launch the stamp when investigations have been delayed and few questions have been answered.

“Someone needs to get fired over this tasteless LibanPost Beirut Blast stamp,” Mustapha Hamoui tweeted.

Another Twitter user, Joelle Bassoul, wrote: “Some perspective to this totally inadequate move: #Beirut had ran out of stamps post #blast as we repaired and needed every bill stamped for tax reasons. You won’t see me queuing to buy this one.”

At least 200 people were killed, more than 6,000 were injured and more than 300,000 were made homeless following the massive Aug. 4 blast at the Port of Beirut. The explosion, as well as leveling half the city, prompted the resignation of Prime Minister Hassan Diab and his government.

Mischka Mourani said on Twitter: “The view from our balcony. Were I not convinced this is an act of trite idiocy, I would say it is a manifestation of the *banality of evil.* Shame on whoever signed off on this project. And, by the way, no one has volunteered to rebuild our broken home *together* with us to date.”


Publicis Groupe veteran Kamal Dimachkie leaves as new successor is named

Updated 20 October 2020

Publicis Groupe veteran Kamal Dimachkie leaves as new successor is named

  • Dimachkie’s career spans three decades of leadership and accomplishment in international and regional markets
  • Shoueiry founded the agency’s Social Content Lab and played a key role in cultivating digital design thinking across the region

RIYADH: Publicis Groupe MEA today announced the departure of Kamal Dimachkie, chief operating officer, Publicis Communications, UAE and Lower Gulf. Dimachkie is a senior executive who joined Leo Burnett in February 1985. The company has appointed Samer Shoueiry to assume the role in conjunction with his current responsibilities as chief digital officer, Publicis Communications, Middle East from Dec. 1. Dimachkie’s decision to leave comes after 33 years with the company. He will leave his current position on Dec. 31 and continue to act in a consultative capacity until June 2021 in order to ensure a smooth transition.

Dimachkie’s career spans three decades of leadership and accomplishment in international and regional markets including the US, Lebanon, Saudi Arabia, Bahrain, Kuwait and the UAE.

Raja Trad, executive chairman at Publicis Groupe MEA said: “I respect Kamal’s decision. He has been a friend and a colleague for over three decades, and not just I but the entire Publicis Groupe family will miss him. His tenure at the Groupe has been characterized by a clear commitment to values that are central to our philosophy. Kamal’s adept leadership propelled the agency to new heights — we won more than 250 accolades and added numerous international and local clients to our roster. I want to thank him for his immeasurable contribution to the Groupe and wish him all the best for his professional future.”

Dimachkie added: “Leo Burnett and Publicis Groupe have been my life for the past 33 years, and I am proud to have been a part of a glorious journey during which I have had the opportunity to serve the company in different roles in six countries, to have contributed to numerous clients and raised the bar internally and within the industry. Part of this has been the joy of working with a wonderful team and leadership, whom I have partnered with, learnt from and shall forever call my friends and brothers in arms. I am grateful to have lived the glory days of advertising with one of the best agencies in the world and to have worked with some of the most inspiring and creative people. I look forward to working with Samer on the upcoming transition and wish him success in his new role.”

Shoueiry, who will take on Dimachkie’s role, has over 21 years of experience across business, design and innovation. He has consistently delivered a robust performance in Publicis’ Experience Design and Experience Strategy, founded the agency’s Social Content Lab and played a key role in cultivating digital design thinking across the region.

Commenting on his appointment, Trad said: “Samer has a record of leadership and value creation, deep experience in generating groundbreaking brand experiences, as well as a focus on strategic design, innovation excellence and a strong technological footing. I look forward to continuing to work closely with him to drive our digital transformation in the region and support the spread of innovation through investments in our people, technology, platforms and tools. Together, we will ensure that we continue to move our business forward in the Connected Age through a data-led, digital-first approach.”

Shoueiry further added: “Kamal has built a strong foundation for future growth, including strengthening our team and expanding our scope of work. The current climate has accelerated digital transformation globally, and we are looking at a future where online and offline coexist to augment consumer experience in an interconnected brand universe. E-commerce is a necessity, digital equities are your flagship stores, search and social your new outdoor. With this new beginning, I will focus on further strengthening our creative strategy-to-results development to offer the best consumer-centric experiences and build brand value.”