Starting today, a new creative duo will get a taste of Hershey’s at Arnold Worldwide.
The Havas-owned shop has hired Mathew Jerrett and Tim Flood as executive creative directors in its New York office. The pair joins Arnold from Steve Stoute’s Translation, where both served as group creative directors working on campaigns for Budweiser (including its massive and generally well-received “Made in America” push), Champs Sports and Google, among others. In the new positions, they’ll oversee all the creative work on Hershey’s with input from Arnold’s global CD John Staffen; both new hires report to agency CCO Jim Elliott.
Prior to joining Translation just over a year ago, Jerrett helped run creative on the Converse account at Anomaly. Past jobs include stints freelancing as a commercial director and creative lead on Adidas for Sid Lee, and Jerrett also spent more than three years with Wieden+Kennedy as a senior art director.
Flood held both the CD and head of strategy roles at Translation, where he also worked on State Farm, the NBA and Beats; earlier in his career, he held comparable strategy-centric positions at BBH, Ogilvy, Y&R, TBWA and Bozell.
Elliott describes the new arrivals as “risk takers and forward thinkers” whose first efforts for the candy brand–which spends more than $700 million annually on advertising–will break early next year. For their part, in a combined statement Jerrett and Flood say, “We’re aiming for nothing short of amazing work.”
In recent weeks, some have suggested that the decade-old Arnold-Hershey’s relationship has begun to sour–a claim that both agency and client have denied.
Some changes have definitely occurred. Arnold did not compete in a review that ended in April with Hershey’s adding Anomaly, Barkley and Argonaut to its roster, though the client insisted at the time that Arnold would remain its go-to creative shop. Since then, the agency has seen some turnover among account leads: Michael Lanzi, global managing director on the business, left the shop, with N.Y. president Peter Grossman assuming his duties until a permanent successor is named. On the client side, Peter Horst left Capital One to become Hershey’s new CMO earlier this summer.
Elliott bristled at the suggestion that Jerrett and Flood have been tasked with saving the account.
“It remains a strong partnership built upon an incredible legacy of brand-building work. Since joining Arnold as global CCO in March of this year, my primary objective has been to strengthen creative leadership and elevate Arnold’s creative product across the network, and these appointments are born out of that mission.”
But Arnold appears to have renewed its focus on the Hershey’s business. In other accounts news, the shop was recently involved in the Priceline.com pitch (which went to BBDO New York) and will no longer work with Milk Bone after the client’s parent company was acquired by J.M. Smucker’s earlier this year. Arnold’s most recent new business win concerned the National Association of Realtors’ $50 million account.
Adweek’s David Gianatasio contributed to this post.