Patrick Whitnall departs Publicis Sport and Entertainment after 15 years with holding group

Managing director of Publicis content, including Publicis Sport and Entertainment, Patrick Whitnall, has stepped down after five months in the role and 15 years at Publicis Groupe.

During his tenure, Whitnall has worked in both London and Sydney across Starcom and the holding company itself, but is now following the lead of “an idol”, John Lennon, and focusing on raising his second baby, due in October.

Whitnall’s new focus will be caring for his family

“I started a content and sports division in 2014 with Bianca Wallis that grew to a team today of 19 talented people, developing and building 22 market-leading products across sports, social, content strategy, influencers, SEO, activations, short form video, [and] partnerships,” Whitnall said.

“I leave behind an amazing team, who have created award-winning work, and whom I know will all go on to make an even greater, positive impact on the industry.”

He also hinted coyly at his next move: “I’ll be back out soon for a new gig.”

Whitnall thanked his colleagues, clients, and a number of leaders and mentors including former Publicis Media CEO Toby Barbour, who left the business earlier this year; Publicis Groupe CEO Michael Rebelo; Carat CEO Sue Squillace, formerly of Spark Foundry; and Publicis chief talent officer Pauly Grant.

The company’s regional chief product officer, Jason Tonelli, said: “On behalf of Publicis Groupe, I’d like to thank Patrick for his leadership and the great work he has contributed in the content space over the years. We wish him and his family all the best for the future.”

Publicis Sport and Entertainment launched in the local market a year ago, headed by Ashley O’Rourke, who reported to Whitnall. Mumbrella has approached Publicis Groupe for details of Whitnall’s replacement.


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