DDB Sydney has confirmed the resignations of both Nicole Taylor and Fran Clayton, who are joining rival agency McCann Worldgroup Australia as its CEO and chief strategy officer respectively.
Taylor (pictured above) replaces Ben Lilley, who resigned as CEO of McCann last month.
DDB Group Australia CEO Andrew Little said: “DDB Australia is full of entrepreneurial people and, with the recent CEO movement across the industry, it’s not unexpected that our people are targeted.
“While I’m disappointed, both Nic and Fran are stepping up into national roles and I know that it’s the opportunity to turn around the agency that appeals to them.
“We tried very hard to keep them, but at the end of the day they have the opportunity to run their own show.
“I’ve had the pleasure of working with and promoting both Nic and Fran over the years. They are great mates and we wish them all the best.
“We are all custodians of our time at DDB, and Nic and Fran can be very proud of their legacy and contribution to the history of DDB in Australia.”
Little is now in the market looking for a managing director and chief strategy officer for DDB Sydney.
“We want to take our time finding the very best people for these positions. These are prominent roles across amazing clients including Westpac, McDonald’s, Virgin Australia and Volkswagen Group, amongst many other clients,” he said.
“The calibre of our staff and the unique DDB culture are additional drawcards.
“These are two of the best jobs in advertising in the world and we’re expecting a lot of interest.”
Little is stepping in as DDB Sydney’s CEO, and DDB Group Australia’s MD of strategy and innovation, Leif Stromnes, is stepping in as the agency’s chief strategy officer, during the transition period.
McCann Worldgroup’s president for the Asia-Pacific region, Charles Cadell, said: “I am very pleased to welcome two of Australia’s most influential industry leaders to McCann Australia.
“Nic and Fran will be Sydney-based and lead our national operations. As a team, we are committed to continuing the upward trajectory as we enter this exciting new phase of growth under our new leadership team.
“Nic and Fran’s reputation as game changers precedes them – they are modern leaders who know how to empower their teams to deliver world-class creativity that results in outstanding business performance.
“With a robust operation beneath them and an already enviable client roster, I look forward to them taking McCann Worldgroup Australia to new heights.”
Commenting on her appointment, Taylor said: “DDB has been my much-loved home for over seven years, and it has been an absolute privilege to serve the talented people and incredible clients at DDB Sydney.”
Taylor said she and Clayton were attracted to McCann because of its fearless commitment to creativity.
“Stepping up to the helm of McCann Australia, we are committed to building something very special in this market and we will do everything we can to support our people to make the best work of their careers,” she said.
Clayton added: “As a global network, McCann Worldgroup has real momentum and is making some of the best work in the world. We love the single-minded commitment to the ‘Truth Well Told.’
“Our industry needs a new style of leadership. Nic and I have always been passionate about building a diverse creative culture and know we have the perfect partner in the McCann network.”