Leo Burnett has raided the ranks of the newly merged BDDP GGT to
recruit its managing director, Stephen Whyte.
Whyte stressed that the move was the result of a long-standing
relationship with Burnetts’ chief executive, Nick Brien, and had
’absolutely nothing’ to do with the merger of BDDP and GGT.
’Burnetts has a very strong culture and a clear idea of who it is and
what it does - it’s one of the best-kept secrets in London,’ he said,
’and as a team of people I like them enormously.’
Whyte, who is the deputy managing director of BDDP GGT, hopes to take up
his new role in January.
Brien explained that he had taken several months to choose a managing
director to make sure he found the right person. ’Stephen is very
strong, not just in running accounts but also in the new-business field
- that’s an ideal combination,’ he said. ’I also wanted to find someone
who would be a good counterpoint to me.’
The extrovert Brien said that exhaustive psychometric tests had been
conducted to ensure Whyte would fit in to the management team.
The pair are expected to work closely together; Brien will keep an eye
on the international accounts while Whyte will concentrate on the
Whyte began his advertising career at Abbott Mead Vickers BBDO, where he
stayed for four years before leaving to set up the through-the-line
shop, Aviator. He quit one year later to join Leagas Delaney then, in
early 1993, he moved on to Still Price Lintas as a group account
At Lintas, Whyte was promoted to the position of client services
director before leaving as a result of differences with the new
management of the agency. He initially joined GGT as business
development director and was appointed deputy managing director last