Sable replaces Hamish McLennan in the role. McLennan is leaving the agency to return to his native Australia for family reasons.
McLennan had led Y&R since June 2006, after being selected to replace the network’s previous chief executive Ann Fudge. He will continue to work in his role as chairman of Y&R until the end of this year.
Sable has worked at Y&R’s sister agency Wunderman since 2001. He was promoted to vice chairman and chief operating officer in 2005, and has also since taken on the running of Team Microsoft, which co-ordinates the Microsoft advertising account across WPP. He will continue in the Team Microsoft role alongside his new Y&R post.
Prior to that he had been the founder of Genesis Direct, an online sports retail business.
Peter Stringham, the chief executive of Young & Rubicam Brands, said: "David’s experience across our group has helped him understand more than anyone how to deliver integrated solutions across advertising, public relations, direct and relationship marketing and, critically, how the evolution of digital channels affects all of those."