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M&C hires sport-specialist creative director

M&C Saatchi Sport & Entertainment – now described rather improbably as the “passions agency” – has hired Conall McAteer from We Are Social as its first “sport-specific” creative director. McAteer has worked on Adidas football, running and Originals, Meta and Tommy Hilfiger among others.

M&CS&E MD Laura Coller says: “We’re excited to welcome Conall as we evolve our approach away from a more generalist ECD-led structure to one that will see dedicated CDs responsible for each of the passion specialisms within our business.

“Creativity is at the heart of everything we do so having creative leaders who are authorities not only in their craft but also in their passion space is essential as we continue to create culturally astute work that puts brands at the heart of things people love in a way that’s authentic, nuanced and truly valuable to fan communities.”

McAteer (left) says: “Joining M&C Saatchi Sport & Entertainment at such a dynamic moment for the agency is a dream move. The fluid approach to being sector specialists and discipline neutral offers me the genuine freedom to lead our work through cultural loves and creative truths. This is ideas above deliverables. This is making work for the culture and its communities, not just the client.”

So-called ‘fandom’ is all the rage in agencies as the world obsesses over sport, football especially, and the gaming market gets ever bigger. Mother, usually a canny investor, is backing a new such agency called Run Deep and Dark Horses has delivered for Lucky Generals and TBWA.

Mind you, it’s easy to get carried away. M&C’s announcement also refers to the introduction of a new creative process at the agency – ‘Heartbeat,’ “designed to ensure that ideation occurs as closely as possible to the passions spaces where clients play.”

Steady on guys. This is a bit rich even by M&C standards.

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