Sam Hawkey has been appointed as the new CEO of Saatchi & Saatchi London. Hawkey takes on his new role today (7/1) as the agency opens the doors of its Chancery Lane headquarters. The office re-opens for a limited number of employees, with a booking system and social distancing measures in place, for the first time since the start of pandemic lockdown. The decision to promote Hawkey was made before the coronavirus crisis.
Over the past five years, Hawkey has played a pivotal role in Saatchi & Saatchi London’s growth, latterly as COO, a role he took up in April 2018 after being promoted from managing director. As COO, Hawkey has increased the agency’s investment in new creative talent with strategic appointments, which include bringing in a new head of design in Kerry Roper, hiring Dan Treichel as executive creative director and Rodrigo Castellari as creative director.
Hawkey joined the agency in 2012. His clients have included BT, EE, Betway, Guinness and Visa. Before joining Saatchi & Saatchi London, Hawkey was at Glue Isobar. He started his career in e-commerce, digital builds and CRM at Dial Media Group.
Hawkey said: “The thing I’ve loved about Saatchi & Saatchi is always being given the freedom to fundamentally challenge and change what has gone before. Nothing is off limits. The idea of being the person to take on that mantle and become its guardian in our 50th year makes me immensely proud. As we head into a future of uncertainty, change and opportunity it feels reassuring to know that the one thing we will all need more than ever is a belief that ‘Nothing is Impossible.’”
Hawkey will report into his predecessor, Magnus Djaba, who has been CEO of Saatchi & Saatchi London for eight years, alongside his role as global president, Saatchi & Saatchi, and CEO of the creative practice for Publicis Groupe UK. As well as Saatchi & Saatchi, the creative practice at Publicis Groupe UK encompasses Leo Burnett, Publicis.Poke, PGOne and Turner Duckworth.
Djaba said: “In two months, this iconic agency celebrates its 50th birthday. We wanted to continue the legacy of Saatchi & Saatchi and our ‘Nothing is Impossible’ mantra, and make sure we have the same breed of entrepreneurial audacious leadership now as we did 50 years ago. When I became CEO eight years ago, Sam was my first hire. There are two things that have remained constants during my time as CEO--one is the agency mantra that ‘Nothing is Impossible’ and the other is my belief that Sam was born to lead this agency. The industry needs creative entrepreneurs now more than ever, and Sam is one of them.”
The rest of the Saatchi & Saatchi London leadership line-up is unchanged with Richard Huntington as chairman and chief strategy officer, Guillermo Vega as chief creative officer and Sarah Jenkins as managing director.