Silburn axed from Fallon after little more than a year

LONDON - Fallon has parted company with Paul Silburn, the former creative director at TBWA\London who was handpicked by agency founder Pat Fallon, after less than a year in the job.

Silburn joined Fallon as executive creative director for North America in February 2005, but yesterday lost his job along with another creative director Mark Taylor, who was one of Silburn's hirings from Crispin Porter & Bogusky in Miami.

Prior to joining Fallon at its Minneapolis headquarters, Silburn was former deputy creative director at TBWA\London and was described by Trevor Beattie, the TBWA chairman and creative director, as one of "the best people in London".

In a statement, Pat Fallon said: "Paul is a brilliant creative, international talent, and a great guy, but I am not satisfied with our progress. I needed to make a change and that change called for decisiveness."

In an interview with The New York Times, Silburn said: "Like Pat, I'm not satisfied with the progress at Fallon and agree that change is needed at the agency." He said it was too early to discuss future plans.

The exit of the creative pair follows trouble at Fallon that has seen the agency lose clients including BMW, Dyson and Lee jeans. The agency has also seen its New York office close, with the loss of further clients such as Virgin Mobile.

Prior to TBWA, Silburn was the creative director of Leith London and a Cannes Gold winner, having spent time at most of London's biggest agencies. He joined Simons Palmer Denton Clemmow Johnson in 1992, partnering Tiger Savage and working on Nike, before jumping ship to BBH in 1994 where he started the "Lynx effect" campaign, and also worked on Levi's and Polaroid.

Silburn joined what was Lowe Howard-Spink in 1996, where he worked on the "Withabix" campaign for Weetabix, Stella Artois and Scalextric before leaving for Leo Burnett in April 2000, which he followed with his move to Leith London.

Fallon said that a search for a new executive creative director would begin immediately. In the interim, the agency said that creative department structure will be flat, focusing on the group creative heads managing their accounts.

Mr Fallon added: "We are lucky we have the creative group head depth that we do because with their continuing involvement in client businesses, I don't expect that we will miss a beat."

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