David Nobay to set up Sydney branch of Publicis Groupe creative shop Marcel

Droga5 Sydney founder David Nobay is setting up a new branch of Publicis Groupe’s creative shop Marcel in Australia.

L-r: Nobay, MacGregor, Baxter

L-r: Nobay, MacGregor, Baxter

Nobay has brought over Droga5′ last remaining client Tiger Beer to set up the new shop, and has been named founder and creative chairman of the new office, which will open in January.

Publicis Worldwide Australia CEO Andrew Baxter will be involved in the management team as will Iona Macgregor, chief strategy officer.

Nobay was one of the original founders of Droga5’s Sydney office, but came in for sharp criticism from some former colleagues after the agency was closed in September, being accused of taking his eye off the ball and pursuing his own vanity projects.

Industry rumour had Nobay taking a senior creative role with the Publicis Groupe, although it was thought he would come in to replace Grant Rutherford who left as executive creative director of struggling Publicis Mojo last month.

He said in a statement: “When Droga5 closed its doors here, I had two options: either lay back and take a breather or get straight back in the game. A single call from Paris made my decision a simple one.

“Marcel is special. Anne de Maupeou, Marcel’s creative leader in France is someone I instantly connected with. And the fact that Iona, my Strategic Partner next year, is a ‘Marcel original’ clinched it. Game on.”

McGregor was previously managing director and head of strategy at Marcel’s flagship office in Paris.

Marcel was the most awarded French agency at the Cannes Lions last year and has offices in Paris, New York, Shanghai and Sao Paulo.

In the release it is described as having “a very strong digital DNA and is specialist at connecting brands with today’s culture”.

Nobay has previously been with Publicis agencies including a stint as executive creative director of Saatchi & Saatchi in Australia. It will be based in Publicis’ complex in Millers Point in Sydney.

Andrew Baxter, Publicis Worldwide Australia’s Chief Executive Officer said: “We’ve been considering the idea of launching Marcel in this market for some time, but had been waiting to find the right leader. When Nobby became available, it was a no-brainer”.

Tiger had previously been working with Droga5 Sydney in Asia, with the agency understood to have recently wrapped shooting on its final campaign for the Heineken-owned brand.

Mie Leng Wong, Tiger Beer’s global marketing head, said: “We instinctively feel that our creative journey with Nobby is far from over. We’re delighted to be his founding client and excited by the strategic and creative firepower we can now rely upon across the Marcel global network.”

Alex Hayes


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