Former Leo Burnett creative director, Billy Mawhinney has been appointed as the new creative director of Manchester-based BJL.The announcement comes less than a month after Mawhinney quit as creative director at London-based agency Leo Burnett.
BJL managing director Nicky Unsworth told The Drum the agency had been in talks with Mawhinney for some time. "It was an important position to recruit for and so we wanted Billy to meet the whole agency, so he could get to know us and we could get to know him. We're delighted he's coming on board."
He began his career with JWT in 1976, and held positions with Bartle Bogle Hegarty, CDP, Still Price Lintas, Ogilvy & Mather and Faulds. He rejoined JWT for a fourth time in 2002, before taking the creative director role at Leo Burnett in 2005. Commenting on his decision to join the agency, Mawhinney said: “Choosing BJL wasn’t difficult. They have great clients, a talented senior team and plenty of ambition. We share the same outlook and value great insight and ideas. They invest in young creative and planning talent which impressed me and the fact that they have control over their destiny appeals to me." Mahwinney will be one of eight board members at BJL and will be responsible for a 24-strong creative department. The agency's client based includes the likes of Bradford & Bingley, British Airways, ATS and Morphy Richards. BJL has been without a creative director since 2006, when Ray Barrett ended his year-long stay with the agency. Unsworth said Mawhinney will be a key addition to the company's senior management team as it continues with its ambitious growth plans.