EXCLUSIVE: Two weeks after FremantleMedia North America’s PR head Manfred Westphal abruptly resigned his post as SVP communications and marketing at the reality TV indie giant, he is joining talent agency APA as head of PR. At APA, Westphal will assume a newly created senior-level communications position, with the agency’s current PR person, Alexis Amonic, staying on to work under him. The appointment is part of an ongoing expansion at APA, which also recently bought an adjacent building, adding 17 new offices.
Westphal puzzled many two weeks ago when he quietly cleared his office over the weekend, leaving only a resignation letter for FremantleMedia North America CEO Cecile Frot-Coutaz on his desk, which his assistant found after he didn’t show up for work Monday. The company is yet to name a replacement. Westphal had been at FremantleMedia North America since 2007 and was promoted to SVP in 2009. Before that, he spent five years at Paramount Domestic TV.