LOS ANGELES Omnicom Group’s TBWA\Chiat\Day has hired Tom Van Daele as a creative director to work on Nissan, said agency ecd Rob Schwartz.
Van Daele joins the Playa del Rey, Calif., shop from Duval Guillaume in New York, an extension of the Belgium-based agency. Brand experience includes Coca-Cola, Alessi, Le Pain Quotidien and Lonsdale. Prior to that, he worked at 10 Advertising in Belgium as a cd, partner, and earlier in his career at Ogilvy & Mather.
In New York, Van Daele recently helped shepherd the Bazooka Bubble Gum dance and user-generated content effort. “He created the dance by finding a song in the archive, building a Web site, and literally engineered millions of hits on the site. [He] did a fantastic job of increasing sales and brand awareness,” said Schwartz. “If he can do that with a little piece of gum, what could he do with a car or a bank?”
Schwartz said that Van Daele would be instrumental in continuing Nissan’s momentum: “The best part about Tom is that he’s a 21st-century creative person. And his book shows that he was practicing disruption and media arts before he even got to Chiat\Day.”
The agency had also hired Brian Friedrich and promoted Jason Busa as associate creative directors to team on Nissan Infiniti. Friedrich is from Lowe, where he worked on Unilever and his background includes stints at Bartle Bogle Hegarty (where he worked on Axe on the team that won a Cannes Silver Lion and a Gold Effie), and at Omnicom’s Goodby, Silverstein & Partners.
Busa had been working at the TBWA\Media Arts Labs on Apple.
“Friedrich has a great pedigree, and we’re thrilled to have him,” Schwartz said. “We want to maximize Jason’s high aesthetic standards on Infiniti.”
Finally, Ken Pappanduros is returning to the agency for his third stint after freelancing. He’ll be a senior copywriter on Nissan. (Pappanduros started his career at the shop in 1990 as a media assistant.)
“Ken’s got great car chops,” said Schwartz. “He knows it inside and out, but he’s not jaded by the car business. He’s balanced between deep experience and perennial enthusiasm.”
Schwartz said the hiring spree would continue: “We’ve got the best portfolio of brands and now we’re looking to hire the best people.”