BURNETT PRESIDENT BOB BRENNAN LEAVES
Move Ends Three Stormy Years at Ad Network
Mr. Brennan will oversee the brewer's media, events and interactive initiatives. He replaces Steve Buerger, who left Miller to be group vice president for media and business development for the corporate sales and marketing group at Time Warner.
Mr. Brennan left Publicis Groupe's Leo Burnett in 2003. Since late last year, when his noncompete contract clause expired, rumors swirled as to where the highly sought after executive would go next.
Recent speculation pegged him as one of three candidates to lead a new overarching media/entertainment unit at Interpublic Group of Cos. Daryl Simm, president-CEO of Omnicom Media Group, and Dominic Proctor, CEO of WPP Group's MindShare, are other names connected with the post. Messrs. Simm and Proctor did not return calls for comment.
Mr. Brennan was best known as one of the executives who built Starcom out of Burnett's media arm in the late 1990s. He became president of Leo Burnett Worldwide in October 2000.
Mr. Brennan, who was known to be simultaneously charming and intimidating, earned a reputation as "Chainsaw Al" as he reorganized Burnett. He personally oversaw many of the hundreds of staff reductions and departmental shifts that prepared the agency for its acquisition by Publicis.
He joined Burnett in 1982 as a media buyer and planner and in 1988 was named a vice president. A year later, he became media director, overseeing the McDonald's Corp. business.
Helped launch Starcom
In 1995 he became director of international media. Two years later, he was named president of Starcom when it separated from Leo Burnett and in March 1999, Mr. Brennan helped launch Starcom Worldwide as chief operating officer. When Starcom and MediaVest merged in 2000, he became chief operating officer of the combined entity, Starcom MediaVest Group. Mr. Brennan was credited for building Starcom into one of the most powerful media organizations in the industry.