Bill Katz, president-CEO of BBDO, New York, has been with BBDO since 1981; he has been sole CEO of the New York office since 2001.
The ad network's North American president-CEO, Andrew Robertson, in a statement said Mr. Katz, 49, would work with the agency and assist with the transition to a new chief executive. Mr. Robertson also said he would assume Mr. Katz's day-to-day responsibilities for the agency.
No time frame has been given for Mr. Katz's departure, but the executive said he expects to be gone by summer.
One of the agency's clients suggested that a reason for Mr. Katz's exit was related to holding company interference in the way the agency allocates its creative resources. BBDO is part of Omnicom Group.
Leaving the industry
Mr. Katz denied any dissatisfaction with agency happenings or Omnicom and said he wants to leave the industry.
"I'm not leaving [the agency] because I'm unhappy. I'm leaving because I want to do something different," he said.
Speculation that Mr. Katz was planning to leave his job has been rampant for weeks, though the agency has consistently denied Mr. Katz had any plans to leave.