Argentina's Pablo Del Campo Goes to Spain

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The Buenos Aires office of Saatchi & Saatchi has emerged as such a strong brand that the agency—Del Campo Saatchi & Saatchi—is opening in Spain later this month. Madrid-based Del Campo Saatchi & Saatchi Espana will be a roll-up of Saatchi's existing Madrid office, several new hires, and Pablo Del Campo, CEO of the agency in Argentina.

Pablo Del Campo
Pablo Del Campo

Mr. Del Campo may be in the forefront of a trend toward global networks encouraging their strongest local agencies to become international brands themselves. Havas' French flagship BETC Euro RSCG opened a BETC office in London a year ago, and plans further BETC shops in other countries.

"Saatchi is looking at sharing the Del Campo Saatchi & Saatchi culture and exporting it to other places," said Mr. Del Campo from the Cannes Lions International Festival of Creativity, where Saatchi announced the new office. "And language-wise Spain is perfect."

The revamped Spain agency will include Maxi Itzkoff and Mariano Serkin, Del Campo's executive creative directors in Buenos Aires who will now spend part of their time working in Spain. Mr. Del Campo said he'll probably spend about half his time at first in Madrid.

He said he's looking to imbue the Spanish shop with the same 24/7 mentality and love of the work that he and his creatives live by in Argentina, where he says "I also consider my job my hobby." He said the agency's Toyota client in Spain was surprised when Mr. Del Campo pulled together a team to work on one of the car maker's projects over a weekend. Toyota has also challenged him to make Toyota one of the three most creative advertisers in Spain, along with Volkswagen and Ikea.

"The model we have in Argentina is a model we think we can replicate, a balance between local and regional and sometimes global," he said. In a highly creative but small market like Argentina, it's been important for the agency to work on international projects and function both as a local hothouse and an international network. "We play both games," he said.

Right now, the split is about 60-40 between international and local projects. International assignments often take the Argentine agency's staffers to Europe for meetings, so the Madrid agency will make it easier to work in Europe. It's too soon to say where Del Campo may go next, but "this is more than a pilot," Mr. Del Campo said.

The Spain agency has about 30 staffers. Del Campo Argentina, which started 12 years ago with three creatives and a finance director, has 110 people now.

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