In another blow, Executive Creative Director Tom McFarlane has left the agency's Melbourne office after six years as creative head to become M&C Saatchi's regional creative head, based here. DDB National Creative Director Ted Horton said he will spend more time in Melbourne until a new appointment is made.
DDB is still coming to grips with news that its biggest client, McDonald's Australia, has decided, after 26 years with DDB, to split its business with a second, yet unnamed, agency.
In addition, the agency has weathered a $20 million cut in ad spending by telecommunications giant Telstra Australia and the loss of the $5 million New South Wales State Bank account.
AD&D handled the $25 million Hyundai automotive account, as well as smaller local business. DDB Australia Chairman Wayne Kingston said the agency will close AD&D, opened with a big fanfare at the beginning of the year.
He downplayed the closing last week as "really just the name of an account group."
AD&D's former managing director, Mike Retter, is to start a mainstream advertising arm of the Hong Kong-based sales promotion specialist Promotional Partners.
HYUNDAI TO STAY
Mr. Retter said he didn't expect the Hyundai business to follow him, although he worked on the account for four of his nine years at DDB.
Mr. Kingston confirmed that John Right, who handled the State Bank, would become group account director on Hyundai.
All DDB's news has not been bad. Its Melbourne office last week picked up the $10 million Brake International account, and the Sydney agency is strongly favored to pick up the $12 million Chrysler Corp./Jeep media planning and buying account lost by Total Advertising & Communications.