Diary: Raillard spills the beans on Marcel's odd moniker

Steadfast in the face of the mighty Publicis PR machine, Diary thinks it ought to set the record straight about the christening of the network's newest child, Marcel.

Word from the Champs Elysees is that the baby takes its name from Marcel Bleustein-Blanchet, the father of French advertising and the Publicis founder.

Over to Fred Raillard, who is setting up the agency with his creative partner, Farid Mokart. Is the story true? Er, no. Apparently, the name was chosen because no Frenchman names their child Marcel any more. "It's like calling your son Basil," he says. "It's so unusual we thought people would remember it."

Meanwhile, the Publicis wags here are suggesting the agency should follow the lead of Raillard and Mokart by launching an offshoot called Rick.

This, of course, has nothing to do with the broody presence of the network boss, Rick Bendel, in Boulangerie Street.

So, what kind of agency would Rick be? Well, it would churn out Asda press ads by the ton and kill to handle the Marlboro account, if it still existed.