Deutsch poaches top planner Sairam from Mother

Interpublic may have issues with its two big lumbering agency giants McCann and DraftFCB but there are some jewels in the crown, digital agency R/GA which is busily expanding around the world and Deutsch, which is now the American end of the Lowe Worldwide network.

Deutsch, which was bought by former IPG head Phil Geier back in 1999, has kept its creative credentials despite being owned by one of adland’s behemoths and now Deutsch New York has succeeded in poaching top planner Alum Shobha Sairam from one of its few substantial indie rivals in the creative stakes, Mother New York.

Sairam (left) who was group strategy director at Mother, joins Deutsch as SVP, group planning director working on MilkPEP and new business. At Mother she worked on Johnson & Johnson and Kraft, among others.

Brent Vartan, Deutsch NY partner and chief strategy officer says: “I couldn’t be happier about Shobha coming to join our gang of lanners here at Deutsch,” said Vartan. “She has an infectious energy, an ambitious spirit, and tremendous integrity. And and she’s scary smart, too.” Earlier in her career Sairam worked at Vigilante and Leo Burnett.

One of the things big network agencies do to their indie rivals is poach their best people (when they’re not buying the company outright). It must be slightly worrying for Mother to see IPG targeting some of its luminaries. 18 months ago it lost creative supremo and New York co-founder Linus Karlsson to McCann.

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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.