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Leo Burnett

Leo Burnett Cuts Some Staff

Well, while we’re on the Publicis Groupe-owned agency theme today (again, purely coincidental), we’ve received confirmation that Leo Burnett has had to let go of some staff today. The Chicago-based agency tells us, “Leo Burnett made the difficult decision today to let less than 2% of its U.S. staff go, in an effort to better align staff to client needs as it evolves and grows in new directions.” Staff count is “less than 2,000″ at Leo’s U.S. operations, which of course also include offices in Detroit and New York as well as the Samsung-dedicated creative hub in LA, so feel free to do the math. 

From what we’ve been told, Leo Burnett’s alignment as they say has nothing do with the agency losing Tampax to sister agency Publicis last month. We’ll let you know if and when

Leo Burnett Brussels Convinces Catholic Priest to Bless Their Website

In case you didn’t know, Leo Burnett just launched a shiny new website. What you definitely didn’t know is that Leo Burnett is apparently very paranoid that their shiny new website will come under virus attack, so much so that the agency is seeking divine intervention to protect their shiny new website.

The above promo video depicts some Leo Burnett staff traveling from Belgium to Seville, Spain, seeking the help of the Roman Catholic Church and St. Isidore, the patron saint of the Internet. Yes, the Internet has a patron saint. Why? I don’t know, I’m not Catholic, though I doubt many Catholic people could give you a reasonable explanation either. I’m also not quite sure whether or not having an Archbishop bless a hard drive counts as blasphemy or is technically religiously fine. In any case, it happened, so be offended if that’s how you roll.

If you’re a hacker who wants to prove that atheism is the bee’s knees and attack Leo Burnett’s “Protected by St. Isidore” website, that’s cool too. And, if you’re Leo Burnett Brussels and want to claim that this is the first time an agency has used God to publicize its new site, well, I’m not arguing with you either. Let’s just hug this out.

We Hear: Reed Collins Returns to Leo? (Updated)

Well, this is an interesting one to head into the long weekend. Multiple spies are telling us that Reed Collins, who left his SVP/ECD post at Leo Burnett’s Chicago hub nearly two years ago, has rejoined the agency to help lead creative on its Coca-Cola creative biz, mainly Sprite. In early 2011, Collins split for his native Australia to join up with Campaign Palace as national chief creative officer.

We’re still trying to confirm start date title with the Leo camp, but in the meantime, we’ll rehash the quick bio rundown and tell you that Collins has had stints at Mojo & Partners in Sydney, TBWA\Hunt Lascaris in Johannesburg, Lowe Howard-Spink in London and the now-defunct Cliff Freeman & Partners in NYC during his career. We’ll keep you posted if and when we get confirmation.

Update: The Leo camp is saying otherwise regarding Collins’ return. We’ll update if and when we hear differently.

Update 2: It looks like Campaign Brief has done the dirty work for us as Collins himself tells the trade he’s left JWT Sydney, is taking a break until early 2013 and has no plans to rejoin Leo Burnett. Sorry for the false alarm, folks, and enjoy your break, Reed.

 

 

McCabe Indeed Assumes CSO Post at Leo Burnett

My, how things change after just a few weeks. After initially receiving tips about this in early September and being told at the time by the Leo Burnett camp that it was “not true to report,” official word is out that Mick McCabe has indeed headed back to his old stomping grounds to take on the role of chief strategy officer. McCabe replaces Stephen Hahn-Griffiths, who left Leo in mid-summer and eventually found a new gig at a Boston-based research and branding firm.

As for McCabe, as mentioned, this marks his second go-around at Leo Burnett, having first served as EVP, director of planning for four years. After his first stint at Leo, the exec moved on to take the chief strategy officer jobs at Deutsch and then KBS+P,  the latter of which he left early this summer (and was subsequently replaced by Jonah Bloom). Now as Leo USA CSO, McCabe will support a client roster that includes Allstate, Kellogg’s, McDonald’s, P&G, Sprint and Samsung. During his career, the exec also had planning stints at the likes of Fallon and TBWA\Chiat\Day.

Update: Leo Burnett Successfully Exploded Hate

As we mentioned last week, on Friday September 21, Leo Burnett celebrated International Peace Day by obliterating hate. They invited people to tweet their hate @missileforpeace, then loaded the resulting hard drive into the 20-foot long missile. They launched it in a desolate (dare we say peaceful) field in Cambridge.

Seems like there are more constructive possibilities when promoting International Peace Day (food drive? debate?), but Leo Burnett’s symbolic act did do its intended duty. The missile launched and then exploded, fragmenting hateful tweets high amongst the clouds. The resulting video is rather pretty.

Leo Burnett Sets Up Creative Hub in L.A., McGlothin to Lead

Nearly 18 months after opening up shop in New York, Publicis Groupe’s Leo Burnett is turning its attention to the left coast, opening up a creative hub in Los Angeles that will solely cater to the agency’s Samsung business. Leading the bespoke Leo office is Shannon McGlothin, who you may remember joined Deutsch LA less than a year ago from CP+B. Along with his fancy new ECD title, McGlothin (pictured) has also been appointed to Leo Burnett’s Worldwide Creative Board.

While full staff count at Leo’s dedicated Samsung office has yet to be revealed, McGlothin has made his first hires in Adam Kennedy and Brandon Rochon, a Cannes Lions-winning creative team from O&M Paris (and TBWA\Paris prior to that) who will now assume the title of SVP/creative director. Together, the LBLA crew will work across 50+ markets where the Leo network is working on the Samsung brand. McGlothin’s new boss, Leo Burnett worldwide CCO Mark Tutssel, says in a statement, “With the addition of Shannon – who has passionately created game-changing communications for legendary brands – we’re investing in our future and in the opportunity to truly make Samsung an iconic brand. From the establishment of LBNY last year to this LBLA expansion, there has never been a more exciting time for us, our talent and our clients.”

How Does One Celebrate Peace? By Obliterating Hate via Missile, Of Course

Is it just us, or are only U.K. agencies getting in on this whole Peace Day celebration? Whatever the case, with Mother London creatives and Euro RSCG London both involved, Leo Burnett London is now also throwing its hat into the peace commemoration ring with an effort called “Missile for Peace.” While not quite a send-tweets-to-space deal ala NatGeo and Campfire, Leo’s “Missile” is aimed at supporting Peace Day by launching a hate-tweet-filled missile into the sky and watching it destroy the negativity.

In the clip above, you can watch HP automation engineer/missile project manager Roy Trzeciak-Hicks and son talk about the 20-foot projectile, which will be launched in a field in Cambrige, Central London, at 7:30pm local time this Friday. Feel like hating on hate? Well, feel free to take part by using the hashtag #Obliteratehate and following the initiative on Twitter @MissileForPeace. Hey, if the whole destroying hate part doesn’t work out, at least viewers should have a decent visual spectacle to remember the attempt.

Dear Leo Burnett London, Go F**k Yourself…Love, Asylum Films

Sure, there’s Leo Burnett London’s nice promotion of McDonald’s involvement with London’s 2012 Paralympic Games, but we’d be pissed too if we’re to believe the tale of another ad campaign involving said agency and client.  Ben Falk, director at Asylum Films has called out Leo London in an open letter for allegedly lifting an entire concept (see above) and making it their own (go here). Here’s a quick snippet: “It is essentially our piece of work reshot and redone with a bigger budget.  Not only the concept, but lighting, the feel and shot selection are almost identical.” See the full-size letter here–but to Leo’s credit, the agency has responded.

Leo Burnett Turns Little Girl Into Poverty-Fighting Superhero

From Leo Burnett London comes a new spot for development charity Plan International, one that production company Partizan undoubtedly had quite a fun time making.

According to the announce, “Mass Construction” features a young African school girl hurtling through impoverished African housing developments, landing with a shockwave that destroys the old shacks and replaces them with pretty nice looking suburban homes. It’s a pretty awesome superpower, and one made a little clearer when you realize the spot is about educating girls to help fight poverty in developing countries. In fact, for each year a girls stays in school, her household income rises on average 20 percent.

The spot will debut in UK movie theaters on “GCSE Results Day,” which apparently when British lads and lasses aged 14-16 receive their scores on some sort of test that will determine how their educational careers shape up. Says Leo Burnett ECD Justin Tindall, “Poverty often feels like an insurmountable problem and because we don’t know where to start, we simply don’t. The fact that Plan know that girls are the best place to start is so simple and arresting that it demanded a narrative to make people really stop and think about the possibility.”

So, next time your daughter complains about going to school, show her this spot. Sure, she might not quite grasp the entire point, but she’ll a least be a bit more motivated to go. Credits after the jump.

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Hahn-Griffiths Leaving Leo Burnett

Details are vague at the moment, but we’ve received confirmation that Leo Burnett chief strategy officer Stephen Hahn-Griffiths, who works out of the Chicago office, is now leaving the agency. Leo Burnett would not comment further on the matter, but what we do know is Hahn-Griffiths joined the agency 18 months ago from Mullen, where he also held the title of CSO as well as managing partner. He was eventually replaced a month later at the latter agency by Kristin Cavallo.

Hahn-Griffiths had spent two-a-half years in all at Mullen, initially joining as EVP, director of bland planning before eventually moving up to the CSO post. While at Mullen, he helped the agency win creative accounts for the likes of  JetBlue and Zappos among other achievements. During his career, the exec has held many gigs on the strategy/planning side, including an eight-year stint at Doner. We’ll let you know if and when we find out where he’s headed to next.

 

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