Wieden & Kennedy snaps up seven creatives in its own version of the transfer window

Well it’s a bit of a coincidence isn’t it, Wieden & Kennedy Amsterdam choosing the last day of the football transfer window to announce the appointment of seven new creatives headed by creative director Rosie Bardales from Bartle Bogarty Hegarty?

Also on their way are Selena McKenzie and Toby Moore from Fallon (Campaign has the full list here).

Bardales, who was working on BBH’s new account Wonderbra among others at BBH, is the latest in a series of top creative to move home in recent weeks, the most notable being Mother’s New York founding partner Linus Karlsson to chairman and creative director of McCann Erickson in New York and London.

And this is what happens after a recession of course, in hard times the talent pool in agencies diminishes still further as recruitment is banned and experienced staff are made redundant, leaving too few to go around when things perk up. And those that are left still standing can command telephone number salaries and perks.

Somehow or other you wouldn’t expect this from an industry that sends its brightest management talent to Harvard Business School but it’s what you get – time after time.

It’s hardly surprising that Wieden & Kennedy is splashing the cash, basking in the glory of numerous awards and winning the global Levi’s account (until recently BBH would seem to have been its obvious home).

But BBH is having a hard time as, to a degree is Fallon, losing Sony despite its much-praised bouncing balls work and seeing Cadbury depart for sister agency Saatchi & Saatchi.

Star creatives are just as entitled as star footballers to follow the money and their version of the Champion’s League, global accounts that are likely to win awards at Cannes and elsewhere.

There’ll be a few anxious agency managements around, at the big marcoms companies especially, who will fear that their creative stars are getting itchy feet and the opportunity to scratch them with someone else’s money and accounts.

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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.