Saatchi planning director exits for NYC role

Rachael Micallef
By Rachael Micallef | 11 November 2015

Saatchi & Saatchi executive planning director, Jason Lonsdale, has left the agency for a role at New York independent, Mekanism.

Lonsdale had been at Saatchi & Saatchi since 2012 where he joined as part of a new management team, headed by CEO Mike Rebelo, and was instrumental in turning around the fortunes of the agency. During his time in the role, Saatchi launched its highly awarded Penny the Pirate campaign for OPSM, among other award-winning work.

In addition, Lonsdale was appointed as chair of the Account Planning Group (APG) in March this year.

“Four years ago Jason took up my invitation to join Saatchi & Saatchi," Rebelo said.

"I knew after working with Jase in London that he was exactly what we needed to repurpose the agency. I genuinely feel indebted to what Jason has brought to our business and our culture during this time." 

Lonsdale started his new role with Mekanism this month, joining as chief strategy officer.

“When I arrived here with Mike Rebelo four years ago, it was fair to say that Saatchi & Saatchi was a bit of a fixer-upper, and we’ve been lucky enough to have a great team putting in the hard yards to turn it around," Lonsdale said.

"I’m extremely proud of where Saatchi & Saatchi Australia has got to – an agency capable of creating campaigns such as "Penny the Pirate” and Hilux “Unbreakable”.

"Plus we managed to launch a new agency in Melbourne, and I’m personally quite chuffed that we were recognised as Australia’s Most Effective Agency this year [at the Effies], which is a pretty high note for any planning director to go out on."

Following his departure from the agency, The Communications Council announced today that executive planning director of J Walter Thompson Australia, Angela Morris, has taken over the role as chair of the APG.

Morris had held a position on the APG committee for the past four years and recently took on the role as vice-chair.

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