Saatchis appoints Bozell's Granger to replace Droga

LONDON - Saatchi & Saatchi has lured the Bozell New York creative director and managing partner, Tony Granger, to become its new executive creative director.

Granger, who has won 24 Cannes Lions, including nine golds, in a career spanning 20 years, replaces the outgoing executive creative director, Dave Droga. Droga is taking a role as worldwide creative director at Saatchis' sister network Publicis.

Granger joins the agency in April, reporting to the worldwide creative director, Bob Isherwood, and will work alongside the chief executive, James Hall, the managing director, Kevin Dundas, and the group chief executive, Martin Cotter, in the London office.

The appointment comes only six weeks after Droga announced his move to Publicis. However, Granger was already known to the Saatchi & Saatchi worldwide chief executive, Kevin Roberts, and Isherwood after they had tried to hire him on a previous occasion. They approached him again following Droga's resignation in December.

His hiring is a strong indication of Saatchis' desire to continue to build on the creative reputation spawned by Droga over the past three years. Under Droga's stewardship, the agency won a score of awards at Cannes in 2002, and was named its agency of the year.

Granger will be responsible for the output of 32 teams, including eight working under Saatchis' integrated creative director, Trefor Thomas.

The hiring comes as Grey Worldwide, Ogilvy & Mather and J. Walter Thompson continue discussions to fill their top creative jobs. O&M's creative helm has been vacant since September, and Grey's since October.

Hall said: "Creativity is at the core of everything we do and Dave has done a great job. Although hard to replace, Tony is the perfect choice to succeed Dave and springboard Saatchi & Saatchi to the next level of creative excellence."

The South African-born Granger joined Bozell in March 2001, following a 14-year stint at TBWA\Hunt\Lascaris in Johannesburg, where he was the executive creative director and a member of the TBWA worldwide creative directors' board.

He started his career in 1981 at Grey in Johannesburg, and moved to Braud & Associates, Preller Sharpe Rice and Geffen Simkins & Marrington before becoming an art director at TBWA.

Granger said: "I am really excited about joining Saatchis. When I was approached, I said yes immediately. It will be great to experience a European perspective after working in the US and South Africa alongside such a talented group of people."

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