Shop Talk: Hurts So Good

David Droga isn’t any more of a sadomasochist than your average creative director, but he did recently have the distinct pleasure of beating himself. As ecd of Saatchi & Saatchi, London, he was part of the team that landed ad duties for the Royal Bank of Scotland. That £10 mil lion ($16 million) review wrapped up the second week of Decem ber. But just two days later, Droga got a call from Maurice Lévy, CEO of Saatchi parent Publicis Groupe, and became worldwide creative director at Publicis—the agency he and his Saatchi mates had subjected to an emphatic whipping in the bank review.

The bitter whip of irony. Still, a few things should dull the pain a bit. Droga will split his time between the two shops over the next two months as he makes sure that Saatchi’s new clients are settled in and its new campaigns are off and running. And, of course, the revenue from the account will end up in the same place at the end of the day, since Saatchi and Publicis have the same parent.

Even so, the joke is not lost on the affable 34-year-old Austra lian. “I’ve got a 100 percent record against myself,” he admits. Is he thinking payback? You’d think not, as he still tends to slip into the first-person plural when talking about Saatchi, where he’s been since 1996. But maybe when he hops the fence for good he can dust off the bullwhip and dish out a few lashings in return.