Lotte Jeffs exits Ogilvy role for freelance work

Lotte Jeffs to depart Ogilvy / Brendan Freeman

Lotte Jeffs, the former deputy editor of Elle, is to step down from her full-time role at Ogilvy after less than a year, The Drum understands.

Jeffs, who was named creative director at the agency after 15 years in publishing, plans to embark on a freelance career. She will continue to work Ogilvy in this capacity on a number of projects in 2019.

Arriving in January, the creative made the surprise transition to advertising after realising “no existing, British mainstream woman’s magazine was ... doing anything exciting for me".

However, she joined the agency on the cusp of what would be one of the most tumultuous periods in its history.

In June, sub-brands such as Ogilvy & Mather, Ogilvy One and Ogilvy Public Relations were dismantled.

Jeffs had been enticed to Sea Containers House by her former boss, chief creative officer Mick Mahoney, chief strategy officer Kevin Chesters and chief executive Charlie Rudd. However, all three left the agency in quick succession.

Elsewhere, Ogilvy One chief executive Jo Coombs, group chief creative officer Emma de la Fosse and chief production officer Clare Donald also quit before the year was up.

After new UK boss Michael Frohlich revealed its new leadership line-up in October, the agency then offered staff voluntary redundancy. The move was positioned as the “final stage in its transformation journey".

Ogilvy’s parent company, WPP, has also frozen recruitment across the board until 2019.

Jules Chalkley, executive creative director of Ogilvy UK, said: “Lotte joined us for a fixed term contract of 12 months, and she has brought a new perspective to our creative process through her editorial background. We are delighted to have a continued relationship on several exciting projects next year.”

Get The Drum Newsletter

Build your marketing knowledge by choosing from daily news bulletins or a weekly special.