Annette King becomes global chair of BBH in Publicis Groupe shake up, as new-look board assembled

Publicis Groupe has put together a new eight-strong board for BBH, led by Publicis Groupe UK CEO Annette King and Joakim Borgström (Jab), the BBH Worldwide chief creative officer.

The new BBH group structure will, according to Publicis Groupe’s statement, help BBH tap into the resources of the wider group, maintain global connectivity, and replace BBH’s global P&L with a local BBH system.

Neil Munn, who has been global CEO for the last seven years, is leaving. He said: “I have decided that now is the right time to step back and let others carve out the next part of BBH’s future.”

A statement from the group says: “A new protocol will be implemented for the future of the BBH brand, with a clear commitment to, and focus on, BBH’s creative prowess with greater opportunities for the network’s talent.”

It also says that “the move further signifies the critical role creativity plays within Publicis’ offering to clients, and the company’s steadfast commitment to maintain the rich and diverse cultures and offering of its creative agencies.”

But there’s no getting away from the fact that agency cultures are being diluted in favour of its “power of one” drive, although Publicis is still maintaining its agency brands, Leo Burnett and Saatchi & Saatchi, and now BBH.

Also on the new board are Karen Martin, CEO of BBH London; Amani Duncan, president of BBH USA; Arto Hampartsoumian, managing partner and executive chairman of Publicis Groupe China (who was chair of BBH China until a year ago); Christine Ng, chairwoman, BBH Singapore and China; Sid Tuli, managing director of BBH Singapore; and Adam Arnold, global CMO of BBH.

Annette King, who is chair of the new BBH board, said: “BBH is a creative jewel and an iconic company. I’m honoured to have the opportunity to lead the new board in partnership with Jab. Our focus will be creatively driven from day one, across all of the markets BBH is in. I would like to thank Neil for his leadership of the brand over the past years.”

It’s hard not to feel a little nostalgic for the original BBH spirit, but Messrs Bartle, Bogle and Hegarty, have together given us a parting thought. They said: “As the Founders of this company it is very simple. At BBH it is all about the work. All roads must lead to better work. The prime responsibility of this new board must be to make the work better and better and available across multiple markets.”

Picture: l-r, top to bottom: Karen Martin, Amani Duncan, Annette King, Sid Tuli, Joakim Borgström, Arto Hampartsoumian, Christine Ng, Adam Arnold.

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About Emma Hall

Emma Hall
Emma Hall is a journalist and editorial consultant and is the former Europe Editor of Ad Age, where she covered European marketing advertising, digital and media stories. She has written for newspapers including the Financial Times, The Guardian, The Times and the Telegraph, and was previously a section editor at Campaign. Emma started her career in New York as a researcher for a biography of Keith Richards.

One comment

  1. Avatar
    Rotisserie Founders

    The best way to ensure creative excellence at BBH?

    Insert a Publicis person to chair the board

    Nothing says “fierce independent spirit” like appointing someone from the holding company overseer things, afterall? Right?

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