M&C Saatchi group creative director Andy Flemming departs

Andy Flemming is leaving M&C Saatchi.

Flemming has been at the agency since 2006, being promoted from creative director to group creative director in 2016.

In a tongue-in-cheek release written by Flemming, he said he chose ‘death by long sword’ after being made redundant, on a video call on Friday.

Andy Flemming

“I initially chose ‘more time to spend with my family’ as that seemed a particularly common excuse in these press releases, but then I realised that I’ve been stuck with them for months and my daughter’s Christmas presents of a bass guitar and amp has become one of my greatest regrets of 2021.”

M&C Saatchi CCO, Cam Blackley, said Flemming is a “self-proclaimed sniper”, something he would agree with.

“Whilst we’ll miss him in the day-to-day, he’ll only ever be a phone call away for special operations. In all seriousness, it was Andy that welcomed me into the agency, he’s been a rock. I described him as a ‘scholar and a gentleman’ to the agency earlier and that’s the truth.”

On Friday, when questioned about his departure, Flemming told Mumbrella he wanted to go out the only way he knew how, honestly and while having fun.

He also said that while contemplating numerous different excuses, “telling the truth was possibly the most unusual and unexpected release narrative”. 

“To be honest, my GCD role was becoming unfeasible, and M&C Saatchi bent over backwards to make sure that redundancy was absolutely their last wish – going so far as to offer me other roles within the organisation. But 15 years is a ridiculously long time, and it seemed the right moment to take stock and peruse another adventure, wherever or whatever it is.”

‘Ricky Gervais’ for Optus

“M&C has been my home for a long time. It’s in great hands and it’ll be a little odd to watch their successes from the outside.”

Tom McFarlane former regional creative director at M&C Saatchi said: “What can I say about Andy that he can’t say about himself far more eloquently. He’s everything a good writer should be. Witty, curious and a lover of words. I enjoyed nothing more than seeing him strut through my door, just hours after receiving a brief, loudly declaring – ‘I’ve cracked it… and it’s fucking brilliant’ And it nearly always was. On the occasion it wasn’t, he’d exit, unbruised by rejection and reappear a short while later, with an idea that was indeed, utterly brilliant. And it’s that resilience that makes Andy a truly great writer.”

Indulging in some humility, Flemming said he has been “one of the most influential writers in M&C Saatchi, if not the industry” during his 15 years.

His work has included ‘Ricky Gervais’ and ‘Idris Elba’ for Optus, ‘Can Kids’ for Commonwealth Bank and ‘Matesong’ for Tourism Australia. Alongside McFarlane, he helped build the CommBank’s ‘Can’ brand.

During his time at M&C Saatchi, Flemming has worked with clients including Steggles TAB and Woolworths.

He will finish up at the agency at the end of the month.


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