Lowe Suspends London CEO Lace

NEW YORK Lowe London CEO Garry Lace has been suspended indefinitely, as the agency and parent company Interpublic Group investigate allegations that Lace met several times with former chairman Frank Lowe to discuss the agency’s Tesco account before Lowe launched his agency in December, sources said.

The suspension comes a week after IPG installed evp Stephen Gatfield as worldwide CEO of Lowe, replacing Tony Wright, who shifted to chairman.

It is believed that Lace was suspended with pay on Thursday and that the shop would confirm the action when it re-opens on Friday. Lowe executives and Lace could not immediately be reached for comment.

A few days after Frank Lowe confirmed that he was opening an agency in London, Tesco said it was shifting its account from Lowe to the new shop [Adweek Online, Dec. 5]. Billings on the business are estimated at $80 million.

The shift was attributed to Frank Lowe’s long history with the client. The client move also came after Lowe London chairman Paul Weinberger resigned to join the new agency, now known as The Red Brick Road. Weinberger had steered the business at Lowe.