IPG’s Wilmot Cites Long History on BK

NEW YORK — Mark Wilmot, named last week to head Interpublic Group’s estimated $300 million Burger King account, claims a relationship with a key Burger King executive that goes back nearly 15 years.

Wilmot, who becomes client management director effective Nov. 25, worked closely with BK svp of marketing programs and sales Rick Dow when Dow was at Northwest Airlines and Wilmot was at Dancer Fitzgerald Sample in New York in the ’80s.

The new hire will report to IPG vice chairman David Bell, who was unavailable for comment.

“He’s one of the best,” Dow said of Wilmot. “He works well across disciplines and is used to the volatile, fast-paced environment of businesses like airlines and fast food.”

Wilmot joins from D’Arcy Masius Benton & Bowles, where he was evp, management director in charge of the estimated $30 million U.S. Norelco business.

The move is another step in forming an IPG account management paradigm, in which one or two execs manage an account shared by multiple IPG shops. Wilmot will work with Campbell Mithun, which handles BK’s kids’ marketing; Draft, which does promotions; Weber Shandwick, which oversees PR; Media First, which manages media; and Deutsch.

Wilmot, 45, spent nine years at D’Arcy and ran BK’s regional field marketing account early this year, but the business shifted to IPG’s Deutsch/LA in July without a review. Deutsch also handles the Miami-based client’s dollar-value-menu account, a new assignment.

“The timing was perfect for me to leave Publicis with the pending closing of D’Arcy and the realignment of accounts,” Wilmot said.

Wilmot’s brother Gunnar, 50, is svp, planning and business development at IPG.