House of Cards creator Lord Dobbs joins M&C Saatchi board

The author of the political thriller House of Cards, Lord Dobbs, is to become a non-executive director of the Tories' advertising agency group M&C Saatchi.

Michael Dobbs drew on his experience as a special adviser and chief of staff to Margaret Thatcher to write House of Cards as a series of novels, which were successfully adapted for TV in the 1990s in Britain, starring Ian Richardson, and then in the 2010s in America, with Kevin Spacey.

Dobbs ought to bring valuable Hollywood contacts for marketing arm M&C Saatchi Sport and Entertainment and talent agency M&C Saatchi Merlin because of the success of the Netflix adaptation of House of Cards. A fourth series of the show is planned for spring 2016.

Dobbs had a spell working for Saatchi & Saatchi during the Thatcher years and is now reunited with his old colleagues, Maurice Saatchi, Jeremy Sinclair, Bill Muirhead and David Kershaw, who broke away to form M&C Saatchi in 1995 and remain in charge as executive directors.

Dobbs is 67, but that makes him a comparative youngster. Saatchi, Muirhead and Sinclair are all 69 and Kershaw is 61 and none of them shows any sign of wanting to retire.

He joins as two long-serving non-executive directors depart after serving on the board since helping to float M&C Saatchi on the stock market in 2004.

Lloyd Dorfman, founder of Travelex, steps down as the senior non-executive director this month and Adrian Martin leaves next summer.

M&C Saatchi said it will appoint a replacement for Martin "in due course". The board is all-male at present.

Lord Davies, the chairman of VCCP owner Chime Communications, recommended in a Government report that a quarter of directors should be female.

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