Saatchi Fills New Business Post

Saatchi & Saatchi Advertising, looking to become more aggressive on the new business front, has tapped a former tank commander to lead a new business charge.
In her first significant hire since taking over as chairman and chief executive of Saatchi’s North American operation in January, Jennifer Laing has tapped Avi Dan, 47, as executive vice president and director of new business development at Saatchi’s New York office, a new post. Dan, who has worked at Procter & Gamble as well as Young & Rubicam, joins the agency from Ryan Drossman & Partners in New York, where he served as senior vice president of strategic planning.
“He’s an advertising and marketing professional first, but he also has that entrepreneurial spirit,” Laing said.
Separately, Laing hired Jim Potter from telephone company Pacific Telesis in San Ramon, Calif., where he was executive director, marketing communications. As a group account director, Potter will work with Dan to try and land a replacement telco account for its Bell Atlantic business, which Saatchi recently resigned.
An Israeli Army veteran of the Yom Kippur War, Dan said his military background could be an asset. “However,” he said, “our goal is to make love, not war, in new business.”
While Saatchi won the Delta Airlines account several months ago, it lost in the review for Red Lobster.