Arun Sudhaman 28 Apr 2013 // 11:00PM GMT
LUXEMBOURG--Lee Brooke is departing his global role at Nokia to take on a newly-created position as PayPal EMEA communications head.
Brooke exits Nokia after relocating from the UK to join the Finnish company in 2010, as global comms head for its critical smartphone business.
Since arriving at the company, Brooke has overseen the launch of Nokia's Lumia product range and its partnership with Microsoft, key elements of Nokia's attempted turnaround strategy. His departure comes amid the mobile phone giant's ongoing global PR agency review.
"The hardest part of it is I’m leaving Nokia halfway through the turnaround," Brooke told the Holmes Report, noting that personal reasons - specifically a desire to be closer to his daughter in Germany - played a part in his decision to leave.
Accordingly, he moves to Luxembourg next month to become PayPal EMEA senior director of communications, joining EMEA president Rupert Keeley's leadership team.
His hire reflects PayPal's continued business growth in the region, with Brooke expected to develop both the external and internal communications functions.
"Unfortunately, at Nokia I’ve been through three major restructurings, so I’ve got a lot of experience with employee and exec comms that I didn’t have before," noted Brooke. “PayPal is in a significant period of growth - this position has never existed before so it’s building it from scratch.”
Brooke reports to PayPal global comms head Christina Smedley, who joined the company last year. Smedley has had a busy six months since joining PayPal; in addition to moving the lucrative US brief to MSLGroup, a decision on the company's EMEA agency alignment is expected shortly.
Before joining Nokia, Brooke held a number of agency roles, including MD of UK tech PR firm Harvard Communications and head of Hill + Knowlton London's tech practice. He also spent almost three years leading regional communications for CA.
It is understood that Nokia has begun advertising for Brooke's replacement.