BBH London names Karen Martin CEO in leadership rejig

Martin will take helm at agency alongside new creative chief Stephen de Wolf.

Martin: MD for past two years
Martin: MD for past two years

Bartle Bogle Hegarty London has promoted Karen Martin to chief executive.

Martin, who has been managing director for the past two years, will join chief creative officer Stephen de Wolf, who started at the agency on 1 June, to form the new management team.

She takes the helm from Neil Munn, the global CEO who has held the additional role of UK CEO since 2018.

Martin joined BBH in 2016 from Australian shop Host. Since then, she has overseen the agency’s Tesco account and led recent pitch wins including Ladbrokes Coral Group and Barclays. 

She was named Campaign’s Account Person of the Year in 2020.

Also comprising the revamped leadership team will be Simon Gregory and Will Lion, who have been promoted to joint chief strategy officers, and Polly McMorrow, who becomes MD. 

Lion has been at BBH for seven years, most recently as head of strategy working on Audi, while Gregory joined the agency five years ago and has been the strategic lead on accounts including Tesco, Barclays and Ladbrokes Coral.

McMorrow started at BBH as a graduate in 2007 and has since served as head of account management and head of business development. 

Also joining the management team is head of production Stephen Ledger-Lomas, who has been with the company since 2018.

Munn said: "We are blessed with more than our fair share of leadership talent at BBH. This new line-up, spearheaded by Karen as CEO and energised by the arrival of Stephen de Wolf as CCO, will be a very difficult team to beat." 

Last month, BBH chairman Jon Peppiatt was made redundant after 25 years at the agency. His exit came after parent company Publicis Groupe UK announced plans to cut some of its 5,000 jobs because of the impact that coronavirus had on the business.