David Patton Named President of Y&R Global

Oct 20, 2016

Y&R Global CEO David Sable announced on October 20th, 2016 that he is naming David Patton the Global President of Y&R, charging him with operational leadership across the regions.  Patton will join the agency in January 2017, based in London. 

Patton comes to Y&R from Grey Group, where he has served as the President and CEO of Grey EMEA for the past six years, and the CEO of Grey UK for two years prior.  He is credited with the transformation of the London agency, as well as for strengthening the EMEA region with the right talent, capabilities and creative focus.

“Y&R has considerable momentum right now, with the win of the U.S. Census account capping off a string of new business wins in North America.  Our Global Boutique strategy is driven by the principle that a network’s strength must be rooted in the uniqueness of each local market.  Strong local offices resonate globally when they are unified by shared values, technology and tools. In bringing David Patton on board, we assure the strength and integrity of both sides of the equation. And I can think of no one better than he to lead this charge forward,” said David Sable.

He added, “I know that his enormous intellect and instincts make him a valued partner to clients and an inspiration to all who work with him.  He knows how to bring the best out of people and his innovative mindset always anticipates what we need to do to meet the challenges our clients will face in the future.  He is focused, fearless and passionate.”

“I am so pleased to take on this new role at Y&R. The Y&R brand is iconic in the industry, and it has continued to build on its legacy, becoming one of the top-ranking creative networks in the world and achieving this standard of excellence with offices from all around the network.  I look forward to working closely with David and the regional leaders,” said Patton.

A New, Burgeoning Healthcare Practice

At the same time, Sable has established a new global Healthcare practice and named Howard Courtemanche its President.  Howard has worked on pharma and consumer healthcare for close to two decades, joining Y&R several months ago, after having served as CEO of JWT’s Health practice, where he drove double-digit growth and built a blue-chip roster of clients.  In the months since his arrival, Y&R has won three OTC and pharma AOR assignments, helping to make the category a key driver of growth for the agency.

“Howard has a proven track record and has an exceptional wealth of knowledge about healthcare and pharma.  He is intrinsically collaborative and a generous teacher.  He has a keen grasp of the very singular challenges and opportunities in the category, and is phenomenal at building the right teams, focusing on the right issues and delivering elegant solutions.  Howard has already actively led us to several victories,” said Sable.

Building on Y&R’s New Business Momentum

Sable also announced that JJ Schmuckler, who has been serving as the Director of Business Development in North America, has been promoted to Global Chief Marketing Officer, based out of New York.  He succeeds Alex Hughes, who has moved to Washington, D.C., to lead Y&R’s U.S. Census account after leading the successful pitch.

Schmuckler began his career at Wunderman in Account Management. He moved to Y&R, where he was Chief of Staff and then to VML, where he was leading Global Integration efforts.  He spent a year at Interlude, an interactive video agency in which WPP holds an interest, where he led the Brand Partnerships team.

“One of the most gratifying things as a leader is to see people within the agency grow and take on new and bigger challenges.  JJ throws himself against every assignment with enormous determination.  His strong analytic skills, his ability to understand what a client needs, as well as his love of building teams has been pivotal in driving our recent new business success.  This is a well-deserved promotion.”

Growth Surge at Y&R North America

Over the past three months, Y&R North America, driven by its New York office, under the creative leadership of Leslie Sims and the strategic leadership of Dick deLange, has won 6 new business pitches in succession:

  • Census: The U.S. Census bureau awarded Y&R with its largest integrated communications contract for the 2020 first-ever digital Census.
  • JP Morgan Chase: Y&R, in partnership with VML, won the corporate JP Morgan Chase & Co. business.  We will be partnering with our clients to bring their brand purpose and corporate mission to life across all communications channels.
  • Cirque du Soleil: Y&R has been named a lead creative agency for Cirque du Soleil, the largest theatrical producer in the world. Y&R will handle overall brand strategy and development of creative campaigns worldwide for Cirque du Soleil's growing portfolio of product offerings."
  • Pharma wins:  Over the past few months, Y&R has won three major Healthcare assignments in the OTC and Pharma space, representing over $10mm in revenue for North America in 2016. For competitive reasons, the specific AOR assignments cannot be announced at this time but will be shortly. 

“We have been quietly adding one new business win after another in the past few months.  This surge of growth in such a short time is testament not only to our agility, but also to the magic that comes from hard work, innovative thinking, great ideas and a fierce ambition to come up with creative solutions.  Many people made this happen and deserve special recognition for such outstanding work,” said David Sable.

“All these changes will not only help us manage the growth we are experiencing and position us for future opportunities, but also will ensure that we are delivering the best of all that our global boutique philosophy has to offer our clients,” he added.