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TBWA’s Wes Hawes departs for Marcel as start-up acknowledges industry will ask why it needs more senior hires

Creative agency Marcel has hired TBWA’s joint executive creative director Wesley Hawes into the new role of deputy creative director.

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Huebscher, left, and Hawes: “I know what people are going to say”

Marcel launched just over a year ago in the first role for its creative chairman David Nobay after the closure of the Sydney operation of Droga5.

In a hiring which makes the relatively small Publicis-owned agency unusually top-heavy, Hawes will work alongside Nobay and Marcel ECD Scott Huebscher.

Hawes has been with TBWA Sydney for two years working alongside partner Gary McGreadie. Mumbrella understands that McGreadie will now lead TBWA’s creative output on his own.

In the announcement, Hawes hinted that he had been frustrated about not being able to be closely involved in client work at TBWA.

He said: “What I like about Marcel is the structure feels super collaborative and immediate.  I missed this direct involvement in the work and the crafting process. I don’t think any other agency in Sydney offers clients such direct access and consistent involvement from their senior talent.”

In his time with the TBWA, Hawes worked with brands including Foxtel, Virgin Mobile, ANZ, David Jones and MJ Bale and won over 20 pitches.

His move comes months after a series of big creative shifts including R/GA Sydney’s Gavin McLeod to AKQA in San Francisco, the resignation of Clemenger BBDO’s Paul Nagy, Andy DiLallo’s departure, Bob MacKintosh’s departure from Host after eleven years and Darren Spiller’s decision to step down as chief creative officer at DDB Melbourne.

Speaking about Hawes’ appointment, Huebscher said in the announcement: “I know what people are going to say… ‘Does Marcel really need more senior people?’ And to that I would say ‘No, we don’t.’ But we didn’t go looking for senior people. We went looking for the smartest, nicest people out there. And we found that in Wes.”

The hiring strategy at Marcel will be familiar to those who followed the story of Droga5, which for a while had one of the most senior, and expensive, creative departments in Australia, but was eventually closed when it failed to live up to its US operation.

Marcel’s main client so far is Tiger beer.

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