Michael Dobbs returns in start-up

The best-selling author and former Saatchi & Saatchi executive, Michael Dobbs, is returning to advertising for the first time in eight years as the chairman of a start-up called Spirit.

The best-selling author and former Saatchi & Saatchi executive,

Michael Dobbs, is returning to advertising for the first time in eight

years as the chairman of a start-up called Spirit.



The new shop aims to combine the creativity of a London hotshop with the

global reach of a multinational network. It brings together the talents

of Mitch Levy, the art director on Lowe How-ard-Spink’s award-winning

’Smarienberg’ commercial for Smirnoff, and Richard Hammond, a former

executive vice-president of Bozell Worldwide.



’Spirit’s offering will be based on a ’centre of excellence’

philosophy,’ Hammond, the major shareholder, explained. ’Under the old

network system from the 70s and 80s, a really good creative idea could

get chiselled to pieces by organisational requirements. That will not

happen with us.’



Spirit will work with Walker Media as its preferred media partner and

will employ the multicultural creative group, World Writers, in order to

bolster its international creative credentials.



Dobbs, who shot to fame as the author of the political thriller, House

of Cards, said he had been tempted back into advertising because of

Spirit’s unique positioning. ’Spirit will be the first start-up to offer

an international perspective,’ he said.



He made his name in advertising in the early days of Saatchis, and rose

to be deputy chairman before quitting in 1990 to devote more time to

politics and writing. He was deputy chairman of the Conservative Party

from 1994 to 1995.



Levy, who resigned this week as a creative director of Lowes, first

worked with Hammond while at Leagas Delaney. During stints at TBWA, CDP

and BMP DDB, he has been involved in a number of famous campaigns for

clients such as Paxo, Hamlet and Mr Tom.



Hammond built up his expertise in the management of international

accounts during ten years working for Bozell Worldwide. He quit Bozell

late last year to work on starting up Spirit.



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