Dru: No next move

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Jean-Marie Dru last week turned down an offer to turn around the French holding company Havas, to remain president-CEO of TBWA Worldwide, part of the Omnicom Group. He spoke with Advertising Age reporter Matthew Creamer about the decision.

AA: When and where were you when you made up your mind?

Mr. Dru: I was in my sitting room in my beautiful apartment near the Seine River. I was by myself and then my wife came in and I said, "Listen, I'm going to stay with my friends." That was Tuesday night.

AA: Why was the Havas offer so tempting?

Mr. Dru: There are three reasons: With Japan, France is the only country outside the U.S. and U.K. that's trying to have local and worldwide powerhouses. Second, Havas is a very well-known institution. And there are different possibilities than with the other holding companies.

AA: Is there an analogy in the U.S.?

Mr. Dru: No, that's the point. In this country, you have a lot of companies that are well-known only by businesspeople and only five to 10 would be known by the whole public. Havas is one of them.

AA: Does l'affaire Havas make you look at TBWA in a different way?

Mr. Dru: No, I have a clear view of TBWA. Strangely enough, I chose TBWA again. It's a hard question to answer because how could I be so arrogant to tell you that working for TBWA is working for the best company in the world? Also, I have a lot of friends there, two most well-known being Lee Clow and John Wren. When you're very old like me-I'm 58-that's important.

AA: Since you brought it up, you are 58 and though you just recommitted to TBWA, are you at all thinking about your next move?

Mr. Dru: There will never be any next move. You know that. C'mon.

AA: Even within Omnicom?

Mr. Dru: I don't think so. No.

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