GGT Advertising and BST-BDDP, both members of the GGT Group, are to
merge, creating a top 15 UK agency which will be known as BDDP GGT.
The move ends months of speculation following the sale of the BDDP
network - which owned 51 per cent of BST - to the GGT Group for pounds
Paul Bainsfair and John Sharkey, the joint chief executives of BST, will
be joint chairmen, while Grant Duncan, managing director of GGT, will
fulfil the same role at the new agency.
The deal, which values BST at more than pounds 8.7 million, will result
in a financial windfall for Bainsfair and Sharkey, who have sold their
49 per cent stake in the agency to the GGT Group.
Trevor Beattie will be creative director, and BST’s executive creative
director, Paul Leeves, will be one of several deputy chairmen. However,
the future looks more uncertain for BST’s creative director of two
years, Tom Hudson. He said: ’It’s too soon to comment, but they’re
certainly not booting me out the door.’
Mike Greenlees, the chairman and chief executive of the GGT Group, said:
’Our ambition is to create in BDDP Worldwide an international
advertising network renowned for its creative and strategic
Greenlees confirmed he is re-examining the group’s media strategy in
Europe, where GGT works mostly with its joint venture partner, CIA Media
Solutions, and BDDP works mostly with the Media Partnership.
Beattie has declared himself delighted with the union: ’I am very happy
- this is the tenth merger of my career and I’m pleased to say it has
been the most sensibly, sensitively and professionally managed of them
BST’s planning director, Chris Baker, will be executive planning
director, while GGT’s head of planning, Karen Salisbury, will run the
department day to day. There will be four deputy chairmen: Leeves, the
BST partners Nick Kerr and John Allen, and GGT’s Dick Butler.
Duncan confirmed there would be job losses, but insisted most would be
in ’back office positions such as finance and production’. Staff at the
agencies were told on Wednesday as the announcement was made to the
Full story, p4.