Collins will report to Mark Roalfe, the RKCR/Y&R founding partner and executive creative director. He replaces Ben Priest, who quit in June alongside James Murphy and David Golding, the RKCR/Y&R chief executive and planning director, to launch a start-up.
Collins joined Mother in February 2005 to run the agency's £35 million Boots account. He began his career at Gold Greenlees Trott and later had stints at Saatchi & Saatchi and Abbott Mead Vickers BBDO.
He joined Lowe London in 2000, where he was later promoted to creative director with his partner Tony Barry. The pair split in May 2004 when Barry quit the agency for Clemmow Hornby Inge. Collins left two months later.
The appointment leaves only Golding's planning director position vacant at RKCR/Y&R. The agency moved quickly to fill Murphy's chief executive role by promoting Richard Exon from managing director in July.