It's likely that you won't find a creative team who had a better
year in 2007 than Jan Jacobs and Leo Premutico. They won
awards in every major show, underlining their creative dominance
as executive creative directors at Saatchi & Saatchi,New
York, including a Grand Prix at Cannes for their work on Tide
2x Ultra in the press and poster category. And that was before
they started their own agency. In mid-November, a month
after departing from Saatchi, the duo opened the doors of
Johannes Leonardo, a venture with minority backing from
WPP. The agency is billed as a creative community, using
transparency and brand activism to raise product awareness.
At press time they announced Johannes Leonardo's first client,
Nomis, a four-year-old Swiss-based sporting apparel and
footwear company started by Simon Skirrow, a former adidas
VP who launched the Predator boot for the brand.
Jacobs, on the pair's momentum in 2007: "I guess you get a
sense that things are taking off.We started thinking about
starting our own place at the beginning of last year—that's
when we started having ideas and thinking about how we
were going to do it.When you get that sense you roll with it,
and it kind of gathers its own momentum until you get to a
place where doors start opening."
Premutico, on the difference between Johannes Leonardo
and a normal agency: "It's really just doing the sort of work
we've always done and then stretching it, having a kind of
bigger canvas. Then, we'd go, It has to appear on this page,
or in this 30-second slot. Now it's like,Well, if this is the
solution to the problem we have, as a piece of communication
what other ways are there to express it?"