Jan Jacobs, Leo Premutico

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Jacobs (LEFT) and Premutico
Jacobs (LEFT) and Premutico
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?"

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