Greenlees to Exit TBWA

NEW YORK-Michael Greenlees, CEO of TBWA Worldwide, is said to be leaving the agency, sources said today.

Greenlees, 54, sold the agency he founded, London-based GGT, to Omnicom for $235 million in January of 1998.

He was installed as CEO of the $6 billion-plus TBWA’s worldwide network, arriving in the U.S. in May of 1998.

Greenlees’s mission was to build a cohesive agency network from the wildly independent offices under the TBWA banner, such as TBWA\Chiat\Day here in the U.S. He was also charged with expanding the list of global client’s on TBWA’s roster.

He is said to be in the middle of a five year contract, according to sources.

Reached Tuesday morning, Greenlees denied an imminent departure.

Greenlees’ boss, Omnicom CEO John Wren did not return calls seeking comment.

Jean-Marie Dru, who reports to Greenlees as the head of TBWA’s European operations, is said to be a frontrunner for the top CEO worldwide slot.