But his new agency Now has just been hit by a hammer blow as founding client Waitrose has shifted the £25m account to Bartle Bogle Hegarty after just three months.
The reason, according to Campaign, is that founder creative Jeremy Carr quit to join JWT and this broke the terms of the agency’s contract with Waitrose.
Creatives Carr and Ken Hoggins (who’s worked on Waitrose for years) were the main reason why the John Lewis-owned supermarket group departed Dare/MCBD for new agency Now.
Back in March the choice by Waitrose marketing director Rupert Thomas of the unproven Now looked risky to put it mildly, the agency being given the business on what was effectively three months’ trial.
Thomas can expect a wigging from his boss, fabled ‘chubby grocer’ Mark Price, managing director of Waitrose.
He won’t be the only marketing hot shot to be receiving such treatment within the John Lewis empire either. John Lewis marketing director Craig Inglis, who’s just been voted the Marketing Society’s Marketer of the Year, aroused the ire of the Daily Mail (and some of his customers no doubt) for describing the company recently as “too beige.”
Still, one agency’s pain is another’s gain and BBH, recently victorious in the new business stakes with £60m Dulux global and Heineken beer brand Sol now has Waitrose to look forward to.
At this rate they’ll be scouring the watering holes of Soho to round up a few more creatives.