FCB moves two directors to London to beef up profile

The FCB network is moving two of its most senior executives - including its worldwide creative director - to London in an effort to build its European and global profile after the demise of its ill-starred worldwide alliance with Publicis.

The FCB network is moving two of its most senior executives -

including its worldwide creative director - to London in an effort to

build its European and global profile after the demise of its

ill-starred worldwide alliance with Publicis.



Geoff Thompson, executive creative director at FCB’s Chicago

headquarters, will base himself in the UK from next month with a brief

to attract accounts that will allow the network to show itself off

creatively.



He is being joined by John Penberthy, managing director of FCB Direct in

New York, who will oversee the development of the network’s direct

marketing operation outside the US.



His arrival will also be the catalyst for FCB in London to move into the

direct marketing arena, via start-up or acquisition, by early next

year.



The changes mean that two of the seven members of FCB’s worldwide board,

Thompson and Harry Reid, the president of FCB International, will

operate out of the UK. They reflect the intentions of Brendan Ryan,

FCB’s worldwide chairman, to end FCB’s preoccupation with its domestic

market by shifting its global centre of gravity.



Top priority is being given to the establishment of a credible European

network - bolstered eight months ago by the acquisition of Wilkens

International, the former Ayer Europe operation.



Thompson, best known for his high-profile work on Levi’s in the US,

said: ’We’re deliberately focusing new business on clients who will

allow us to do showcase work,’ he said. ’Although we have a lot of big

and traditional advertisers, you can’t get to Cannes on them.’



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