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M&C Saatchi exodus continues as CEO and CCO take voluntary redundancy

M&C Saatchi CEO and CCO take voluntary redundancy as troubles deepen

Troubled agency network M&C Saatchi has lost more senior figures with the departures of the chief executive and chief creative officer of its flagship UK ad agency.

M&C Saatchi confirmed to The Drum that it had accepted voluntary redundancy from chief exec Giles Hedger and creative head Justin Tindall whose decision to quit follows the loss of the Natwest ad account.

Their departures come a week after the shock exit of co-founder Lord Maurice Saatchi and non-execs Lord Michael Dobbs, Sir Michael Peat and Lorna Tilbian from the agency's eponymous parent company. The overarching M&C Saatchi PLC has endured profit warnings and a high-profile “cock-up in the accounts department”.

In the wake of Hedger and Tindall's resignations, chairman Tim Duffy is to serve as interim chief executive officer while joint deputy executive creative director Matt Lee and creative director Mark Goodwin are to lead the creative department.

On his departure, Hedger said: “I have decided to leave M&C Saatchi as part of the voluntary redundancy programme triggered by the loss of NatWest. I have written to the agency to say that putting myself forward was the only fair and honourable thing to do. In doing so, I hope to spare others less senior than myself."

Tindall added: "Following the recent announcement of a redundancy programme, it was unconscionable for me to make judgments about the livelihoods of others without putting myself forward first. As such, and with a heavy heart, I volunteered for redundancy."

Tony Walford, a partner at M&A advisory Green Square, broke down how the agency accrued a debt of around £6.5m. He noted "accounting scandals and tanking shares aren’t always terminal.”

On this theme, writing in The Telegraph earlier this week M&C Saatchi chairman Jeremy Sinclair vowed not to abandon or sell off the company.

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