P&G’s Stengel Preps Exit; Pritchard to Lead Marketing

NEW YORK Procter & Gamble global marketing officer Jim Stengel is leaving the packaged-goods giant after 25 years and will be succeeded by Marc Pritchard, P&G’s president of strategy, productivity and growth, the company said today.

P&G is the world’s largest advertiser and Stengel has been one of the most visible and influential marketing executives in all of global business.

According to the company’s annual report, it spent more than $7.9 billion on all advertising services — including broadcast, Internet and in-store — during its 2007 fiscal year, which ran from July ’06-June ’07. The company spent more than $3.7 billion last year in domestic measured media, per Nielsen Monitor-Plus.

“Jim Stengel has reinvigorated P&G’s marketing function and strengthened P&G’s capability as one of the world’s leading brand builders,” said A.G. Lafley, P&G’s chairman of the board and chief executive officer, in a statement.” Jim has helped change the way P&G markets our brands by challenging traditional marketing models and setting new standards for P&G marketing rooted in deep consumer understanding.”

Pritchard, 48, becomes global marketing officer on Aug. 1. Stengel, 53, exits on Oct. 31.

P&G rep Jeannie Tharrington said Stengel was simply ready to move on. “Jim feels like he accomplished what he set out to do which was reinvigorate marketing functions and strengthen P&G’s capability as a leading brand builder,” she said.

In an e-mail to “friends and colleagues” obtained by Brandweek, Stengel said he plans to “embark on another journey” with two goals, including “to lift and elevate marketing/brand building to be a more world-improving force” and “to give back in areas where I have a passion and I have something to give.”

Stengel added that he is “in the very early stages” of collaborating on a book about “lifting marketing and organizations to a different level.” He added that he would “work with/consult with a select group of people and companies that share these ideals and are committed to lift their brands and their people to different levels of performance and inspiration.”

In addition, the note said Stengel hopes to “join a major university in some capacity” and be an advisor to Roy Spence, founder of Omnicom Group’s GSD&M Idea City, who is launching The Purpose Institute in Austin, Texas.

Stengel could not be reached for comment.

Pritchard joined P&G in 1982 and has served in several capacities, including finance, advertising, marketing and information technology, as well as managing the Oil of Olay brand. In 1996, he became vp, gm of P&G cosmetics and fragrances and is credited with resurrecting Cover Girl with an ad campaign themed, “Easy, breezy, beautiful,” and with products like Cover Girl Outlast and Max Factor Lipfinity. In 2006, Pritchard took his current title.

Stengel joined in 1983 and worked on various brands including Duncan Hines before he became global marketing officer for P&G in 2001.

P&G’s wide-ranging agency roster cuts across holding-company lines and includes shops such as BBDO, Bromley, Burrell, Carat, Carol H. Williams, Conill, DDB, Grey, Integer, Leo Burnett, Saatchi & Saatchi, Starcom MediaVest, TBWA\Chiat\Day, Team One, The Kaplan Thaler Group and Wieden + Kennedy, among others.


Dear Friends and Colleagues,

I am announcing this week my plans to retire from my position as global marketing officer for Procter & Gamble. This will be effective November 1. 

This is a company that I simply love. I love its purpose, its people, its brands. I am celebrating my 25-year anniversary with the company this summer, just before I retire. I have loved every minute of my 25 years, and I thank all of you associated with P&G for an extraordinary experience.

I am moving forward for two principal reasons. First, I have done what I had set out to do seven years ago when A.G. gave me the privilege of being Procter & Gamble’s global marketing officer. I had a vision back then, shared by my P&G and agency colleagues, to make Procter & Gamble the best brand-building company in the world. With the best people, the best brands, the best agencies doing their best work.  I believe we have done that. While we will always have opportunities, the equities of our brands have never been stronger, the quality of our people has never been higher, and the performance and inspiration in our agencies coming out of the Cannes Award has never been higher. I am proud of all of you for what you have done to achieve that. 

The second principal reason I am retiring now is to follow another dream, another passion.  And this dream and passion are deeply rooted in my experience over the past 25 years. I would like to embark on another journey, with two goals:

1. To lift and elevate marketing/brand building to be a more world-improving force.  And to work with like-minded people in doing that.

2. To give back in areas where I have a passion, and have something to give.

I truly believe that brands — and the people behind them — can make a much stronger impact than they are making today. We have tremendous talent in our industry, and when this is lifted with a higher meaning, deeper purpose, and more inspiration, amazing results happen for consumers and companies. This is my passion, and I want to help drive this, working with people and organizations who share this passion. And this conviction has come from my experience with so many of you, and what we have worked on together. And again I thank you for that.

I also want to give back.  Especially to younger people, and to help inspire the next generation of professionals in our field.  I believe the so-called Generation Y has tremendous potential and I would like to help unleash that.

I am getting started against this dream in a few areas:

— I am in the very early stages of collaborating on a book. The book will be about lifting marketing and organizations to a different level, how to do it, what you can expect when it happens. And it will all begin by being very “ideals” driven.

— I will work with/consult with a select group of people and companies that share these ideals, and are committed to lift their brands and their people to different levels of performance and inspiration. This will include Board service, beyond the Motorola Board service over the past three years.

— I will join a major university in some capacity, teaching our next-generation leaders the principles I believe strongly in.

— I will be an advisor to Roy Spence, founder of GSDM Idea City, as he launches The Purpose Institute in Austin, Texas. 

— Finally, I will find time to write and further develop my passion for communication, beginning with this book collaboration. 

Thanks to all of you for your inspiration. And I look forward to P&G, through its purpose, brands and people, continuing to inspire all of us in the days, months, and years ahead.

With great affection,
James R. Stengel