UK marketing director Danielle Crook (left), a one-time Wieden+Kennedy exec, is leaving Vodafone for a top EMEA marketing job at Starbuck’s. She is the second top line departure at the UK mobile phone giant, following global brand director Clare Sheikh out of the Vodafone revolving door. Crook joined Vodafone in 2009 from Gap where she was brand director.
At Vodafone she is reported to have been responsible for the RKCR/Y&R ‘Yoda’ campaign and presumably played a role in the decision to choose the company’s latest agency via a closed WPP pitch, although this is likely to have been influenced by execs further up the Vodafone corporate ladder.
Sheikh left the company in more of a hurry and is believed to be contemplating legal action against the company. Her predecessor was agency veteran David Wheldon who now occupies a senior role at Barclays.
Crook’s departure could be coincidence of course, these days Starbucks has a head of steam behind it after a few years in the doldrums. Sheikh has been replaced by Barbara Haase from Germany and it’s possible Crook was a candidate for that job.
Vodafone has always seemed more comfortable with a marketing programme based around its involvement with Grand Prix motor racing than a consistent commitment to advertising, moving from JWT to BBH and then back to WPP in the UK in recent years. WPP has maintained a grip on its global advertising.