Former Future Publishing boss Stevie Spring joins Peter Scott’s Engine Group

Stevie Spring, who was ousted as CEO of Future Publishing last October, is joining ambitious UK marcoms contender Engine Group as a non-executive director.

Also joining in the same role is John Bernbach, president of Engine’s US holding company (and son of DDB’s Bill). Engine has also confirmed the appointment of industry veteran Ashley Martin as group finance director, something of a hot seat at Engine in recent years.

Engine chairman and CEO Peter Scott says: “As Engine positions for the next phase of its growth, we have made two important new appointments to enhance our board team. Stevie Spring brings extensive public company leadership and advertising and marketing industry expertise. In turn, Ashley Martin brings extensive financial expertise in managing the expansion of high growth businesses.”

Spring (left), who used to run Y&R in the days before it merged with Rainey Kelly Campbell Roalfe, is a lively character who probably doesn’t see her hands-on days as being behind her. So it’s possible that she may emerge in some executive role as the company continues its expansion plans.

CEO Scott was one of the founders of London agency WCRS, one of the key components of Engine. Scott returned to the agency to oversee its buyout from Havas (at one time WCRS owned the Aegis media business) and then embarked on a programme of acquisitions.

It now has offices in London, New York, Shanghai, Hong Kong, San Francisco, Brussels and Edinburgh with biggish players in all the major marketing disciplines. But the US remains a challenge. Former US boss Martin Puris stepped down recently and, with money markets tight and competition intense, it is still waiting for the big US agency acquisition it needs.

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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.