Months of speculation around adland’s parish pump as to who would head the London office of Saatchi & Saatchi were ended yesterday with the naming of James Hall as the shop’s next chief executive.

Hall, currently in a mirror role at Saatchi & Saatchi New Zealand, will take up the reins at the end of March, replacing – and reporting to – Tamara Ingram who becomes executive chairman.

Her new post will allow Ingram to maintain her close links with the agency’s key Procter & Gamble account, at the same time focusing on the acquisition of new business.

Hall, chosen because of his impressive track record during his ten-year stint with Saatchi, joins the London office as the network enters a critical period. Not only has it to recover from the defection last November of Hewlett Packard’s global business to Publicis [WAMN: 2-Nov-00]; it must also come to grips with the new profit-related remuneration structure imposed by P&G in place of its former commission-based arrangement.

Ingram hails Hall's appointment in glowing terms: "We only looked at the best candidate — James."

News Source: CampaignLive (UK)