OgilvyOne chief executive Jo Coombs is leaving the agency just under a year after being promoted to the top role in a move which pooled its B2B division with three tech firms acquired by WPP in 2013.
Coombs started her career at Brann (now Havas Helia) in 1995 and then had a spell at OgilvyOne before joining Wunderman in 2002. However, she returned to OgilvyOne in 2007 and was appointed UK managing director in 2012, before succeeding Sam Williams-Thomas who was appointed CEO of OgilvyOne Business last May.
Ogilvy UK is set to announce a new leadership team as part of WPP global plans – first revealed last year – to scrap its separate divisions, including OgilvyOne and Ogilvy PR, and rebrand them under the Ogilvy moniker with a single P&L.
The overhaul has already been implemented in the US; operations in other countries, including the UK and Europe, Far East, Canada and South America were due to follow last year, although it is understood that there has been some resistance to the move. It is still listed on the WPP website.
OgilvyOne can trace its roots back to 1972, when O&M bought the direct marketing firm Hodes-Daniel Company as the foundation for Ogilvy & Mather Direct. Its first client, American Express, is still on board today.
Coombs, whose departure is said not to be linked to the restructure, said: “I have loved my time at Ogilvy. I have been lucky to work with so many brilliant, smart, funny people, wonderful brands and first class clients. And most importantly, we’ve made some incredible work over the years, of which I am very proud.
“Having achieved more than I could have ever imagined, now seems a good time for me to move on to my next challenge. I wish Ogilvy the best of luck with its plans for the future.”
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