As part of its effort to gain a bigger foothold in the U.S., London-based network M&C Saatchi has tapped AKQA's Pierre Lipton to serve as chief creative officer in New York.
His departure from the agency comes on the heels of AKQA's sale to WPP this summer. Mr. Lipton, 40, was most recently an executive creative director in AKQA's San Francisco flagship office, overseeing a department of over 125 people and working on clients such as Visa, Target and Audi. Prior to that , he spent time at Omnicom Group's BBDO and TBWA.
When Mr. Lipton officially starts in the new role in October, he will report to M&C Saatchi's New York CEO, Jeff Brooks. The agency, which now numbers about 50 people, currently has a client roster that includes Unilever, Pfizer and Kellogg.
"The opportunity to join the M&C Saatchi family was too great to pass up," said Mr. Lipton in a statement. "Jeff and I have each led within both digital and traditional agencies. To be able to take what we've learned and create a new agency model built for what clients really want in today's world is extremely exciting. And to do it with the backing of a global network gives us strength and stability from the start."
M&C Saatchi Worldwide is a sizable operation -- it has offices in 19 countries and has a total of over 1,800 staffers -- but thus far it's not been able to establish itself as a top competitor to established U.S. shops, and has a relatively low profile in the North American market.
The agency has had a Los Angeles presence, and earlier this year, it reopened its doors in New York (an earlier presence in the Big Apple was folded into the L.A. office) and appointed Mr. Brooks to lead the operation. He was formerly CEO and chief digital officer at EuroRSCG.
Now Mr. Brooks is charged with trying to build out M&C Saatchi's U.S. management team and raise the shop's stateside profile. His next hire is expected to be a chief strategy officer.