Keep immigrants out – send for M&C Saatchi; new boss at Premier Foods, Ad Age picks 72andSunny

The UK government is apparently considering running an ad campaign to dissuade Bulgarians and Romanians from flooding into Britain when the rules change soon. Lots of references to warm beer, cold and wet weather and an economy run by George Osborne will doubtless be considered for the brief.

So which agency should get the job? M&C Saatchi is the Government’s agency of choice at the moment, (Lord) Maurice Saatchi’s ‘brutal simplicity of thought’ seems to chime with the Tory boys (of whom he’s a senior member, of course).

But Maurice and elder brother Charles (no longer connected with the agency but available, I’m sure, to offer his younger sibling his opinions) are themselves immigrants: Sephardic Jews from Baghdad. Under the current regime they wouldn’t even get on the plane.


Premier Foods CEO Michael Clarke has resigned, to the consternation of the City. He’s to be replaced by former (and rather short-lived) Cable & Wireless boss Gavin Darby (left) who earned his spurs at Coca-Cola.

Premier was a brave attempt to build a go-go company through re-energising orphan brands but it hasn’t quite worked out that way. It bought Hovis bread for about £1bn just before the recession and the rest is rather predictable history.

Clarke, a former senior Kraft Europe executive, should have been the man to fix it. But Premier, under Clarke, didn’t help itself by flitting around London ad agencies: you can do this when you’re Kraft, not when every £10m or so is a matter of life and death. Darby needs to find and back a very good agency.

72andSunny has been chosen as Ad Age’s agency of the year with Carat winning the media agency gong. Ad Age’s Creativity offshoot chose Wieden+Kennedy Portland. 72andSunny produced the Samsung campaign that our judges liked so much in their choices of last year’s good things.

So well done them. I wonder if 72andSunny was on one of those (possibly mythical) performance-related deals? If so, they can probably retire.

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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.