Lowe's rollercoaster continues

Paul Weinberger stays put, but Mark Cadman, Russ Lidstone and Nestle have quit the agency.

Paul Weinberger will not join the exodus of senior managers from Lowe London and has opted to remain as the chairman of the agency for the time being.

Weinberger had said he wished to step down as chairman in protest at being kept in the dark about Garry Lace's appointment as chief executive.

But agency sources claimed this week that the chairman had been persuaded to change his mind.

His decision was the single piece of positive news in a bleak week for Lowe, which saw the resignations of its managing director, Mark Cadman, and planning director, Russ Lidstone, and the loss of most of its Nestle confectionery business to JWT.

Cadman had been expected to quit, after being denied the chance to succeed Matthew Bull as the chief executive. Cadman was unavailable to confirm that he had been offered the chief's executive role by fax before Lace's hiring and that he was considering legal action against Lowe for constructive dismissal.

Cadman and Lidstone's departures will fuel speculation about Lowe's future tenure of the £42 million Tesco business. Along with Weinberger, the pair formed the core team on the account.

Cadman was in talks about the vacant managing director's job at JWT last year. Industry sources believe the agency would be keen to reunite Cadman with Lidstone, who joins JWT as its head of planning. The pairing would boost JWT's retail credentials just as Sainsbury's puts its account up for pitch. Tesco still insists its business is not about to be reviewed.

Nestle brands being switched from Lowe to JWT include Double Cream, Milkybar and Quality Street. Lowe retains Aero, Little Notions and Baci. Although the loss of the business is not seen as a huge financial blow the Nestle brands have played an important role in sustaining Lowe's creative profile.

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JANUARY BLUES

- Agency senior staff in uproar at Garry Lace's controversial appointment to succeed Matthew Bull as chief executive. Paul Weinberger proffers his resignation as chairman.

- Matt Edwards resigns as new-business director to become new-business and marketing director at WCRS.

- Russ Lidstone quits as planning director to take over the planning department at JWT.

- Mark Cadman quits as managing director without a job to go to.

- Nestle Rowntree pulls the bulk of its £6 million confectionery business out of Lowe and reassigns it to JWT.