Publicis poaches Duncan as managing director

Grant Duncan is abandoning his international role at the TBWA group after just three months to become the managing director of Publicis.

Grant Duncan is abandoning his international role at the TBWA group

after just three months to become the managing director of Publicis.



The former GGT managing director, who helped bed down the agency’s

merger with TBWA Simons Palmer, resigned this week, ending several

months of speculation about his future within the combined group.



Duncan, 40, joins Publicis’s managerial front-line as it is rejigged in

the wake of the retirement last year of Michael Conroy as Publicis group

chairman in the UK, and the appointment of Rick Bendel, the agency’s

chairman, to succeed him.



’We knew we would have to strengthen the agency’s management because I

can’t spend as much time there as before,’ Bendel said.



Duncan acknowledged that his decision to quit as managing director of

TBWA International was because the job had limited appeal.



He said: ’An international role doesn’t allow you to run things in a

hands-on way. The Publicis offer is an opportunity to get back in the

saddle.’



Paul Bainsfair, TBWA’s chairman, admitted he was ’disappointed but not

surprised’ by Duncan’s decision. ’His heart was in the UK and I can see

why he feels the job is the right thing to do,’ he said.



Duncan, who will report to Richard Hytner, the Publicis chief executive,

when he joins the agency early next month, will have specific but as yet

undisclosed account responsibilities.



Hytner said: ’Our recent United Biscuits global win climaxed a very good

new-business year. We’ve become a very important agency and our

expansion means we need to bring in somebody of Grant’s ability and

calibre.’



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