DDB’s global ECD Jeremy Craigen, a former ECD of DDB London before the 2011 merger with adam&eve, is leaving after 25 years.
Craigen (left) says it’s now “time to go and find some exciting new challenges outside of the world of Paddington (adam&eveDDB’s London office).”
DDB Worldwide CCO Amir Kassei says: “Jeremy is one of the great creative leaders in our industry. I want to thank him for all the great things he did for DDB and our clients and wish him the very best in all his future endeavors.”
Which all sounds very polite and amicable although some former DDB hands think otherwise; specifically that Craigen was forced out when control of the global VW account passed from the UK to Germany, partly to shore up a struggling German operation. Craigen, these sources say, didn’t see eye-to-eye with DDB EMEA CEO Pierre Tramontin and wasn’t offered the chance to relocate to Germany.
It does seem rather odd that creative control of VW has passed from London as the agency has produced outstanding work throughout Craigen’s various tenures, helping to make VW one of the most successful – and certainly among the biggest – car companies in the world. DDB Germany’s various offices are closer to Wolfsburg, of course, but this is a global account.
We wait to see what Craigen does next. But he’d be quite a catch for another agency with a big car account.
Here we go again. Another case of “it ain’t broke, so let’s fuck it up” syndrome. What will Tramontin (who?) do? Probably fall into the same trap as so many other globular nramds have. VW was the best example of how to do global advertising properly with one big creative strategy, NOT, as so many lesser brands have tried to do: one big creative execution.
What a shame, Craigen has doen some brilliant work. There was a time when creativity really mattered. In fact, that’s what made VW such a successful, global brand. The clients stuck to their knitting; manufacturing and left the rest up to Bill and his people.
Good luck Jeremy Craigen, your name will live on as a great creative long after creatures like Tramontintin are long forgotten.