Saatchi & Saatchi and the Saatchi brothers team up to celebrate 40 years

Well that’s what seems to be happening this Thursday anyway as Charles and Maurice Saatchi team up with Saatchi & Saatchi, the agency they founded and which kicked them out back in 1994, to celebrate 40 fabulous years.

It just goes to show that “nothing is impossible” says M&C Saatchi boss Maurice Saatchi, neatly finding the opportunity to remind the world of the famous Saatchi slogan, the old tart.

Saatchis, now owned by Publicis, apparently first had the idea for the celebration, only to see it hijacked by the brothers. It’s being held in Charles’ modern art gallery just off the King’s Road and was announced to a surprised world in the Sunday Times at the weekend, Charles’ favoured medium for big announcements (about him).

But will Charles turn up? Usually he doesn’t to parties but he may make an exception in this case, if only to ensure that nobody damages his pictures.

As ever with anything Saatchi the hype is of stratosphere-type levels, the brothers era S&S being described (variously) as the biggest talent shop ever in the UK, the firm that invented the 1980s, Margaret Thatcher and much besides.

The truth is probably that Collett Dickenson Pearce, now defunct but whose alumni recently celebrated its 50th anniversary was the biggest talent shop, said alumni including Sir Frank Lowe, Colin Millward, Alan Parker, John Hegarty, Hugh Hudson, David Puttnam, Ridley Scott (sort of, they introduced him to commercials), Paul Weiland and one Charles Saatchi.

Its work was more original too, Saatchis being inclined to resort to big budgets and hype as alternatives to big ideas sometimes.

So what does the modern-day Saatchis get out of all this? Not a lot really but it’s a generous gesture to invite the M&C Saatchi crowd. Although they could hardly celebrate 40 years of Saatchiness and pretend that the brothers, Tim Bell, Martin Sorrell and co had never existed.

Will they all fall out on the night? If you put a hundred or more account men in a room with loads of big-spending clients an unseemly rugby scrum is likely to ensue.

A new series of Mad Men starts in the UK on Wednesday. Let’s hope they have a few cameras at this bash to bring us all the UK’s own real life version.

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About Stephen Foster

Stephen is a former editor of Marketing Week and London Evening Standard advertising columnist. He wrote City Republic for Brand Republic and is a partner in communications consultancy The Editorial Partnership.

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