BBH in N.Y. Names CEO

NEW YORK Bartle Bogle Hegarty global director of strategic planning Emma Cookson is replacing Gwyn Jones as CEO of the shop’s New York office, the agency said.

Jones, who was named to the top job in September 2004, is shifting to BBH in London, where he will assume a “senior global management role,” the agency said. The changing of the guard takes effect next week, though in the next few months Jones will shuttle between London and New York to ease the transition.

On Jones’ watch, the agency added accounts such as Miller Brewing Co.’s Miller Lite, Dyson vacuum cleaners, PepsiCo’s SoBe and New York City’s tourism bureau. Losses have been limited to Diageo’s Smirnoff Ice and EDS, which the agency resigned.

The Publicis Groupe-backed agency positioned Jones’ shift as a promotion for a job well done, but sources said his return to the U.K. also reflects his family’s desire to reconnect with a region where it has roots.

“Gwyn has done a fantastic job in building BBH New York,” said BBH worldwide COO Simon Sherwood, in a statement. “BBH now has six offices around the world and is looking to open in India. The global nature of BBH’s business and its success in offering a real alternative to conventional networks requires more management resources which Gwyn, with his outstanding track record in London and New York, is supremely well equipped to provide.”

BBH did not elaborate on Jones’ new role or reveal what his title would be. Jones said it would be spelled out in a broader announcement in the next few months.

“The timing now is partially for personal reasons, but also because we now feel confident in the leadership of New York,” said Jones, acknowledging that his family’s wishes factored in the move. New York is “really on the map now and we’ve got fantastic talent,” he added. “We can feel confident against all comers.”

Before running New York, Jones, 40, was CEO of BBH’s London office. He has spent his entire 20-year career at the agency, starting as a graduate trainee in 1987.

Cookson, 41, has worked at BBH’s New York office since 1999. A 14-year veteran of the agency, she rose to the global strategic role in 2002. It was not immediately clear if BBH intends to fill her global post.