Chris Macdonald has been promoted to president of McCann North America, reflecting his role in the agency's recent wave of new business wins since the Brit moved to the U.S. as president of its flagship office in 2013.
Under Macdonald's direction—his first tour of duty in the states—McCann Erickson has won major new clients including the New York Lottery, Reckitt Benckiser, Choice Hotels, MGM Resorts and State Street Global Advisors. It marked the beginning of the agency's turnaround under McCann Worldgroup chief Harris Diamond, who was named to that job in late 2012. The agency also grew organically with assignments from existing clients like Verizon (Verizon Wireless), Nestlé (Nespresso) and MasterCard. In addition to General Mills, MasterCard, RB, and Nestlé, the New York agency also works on the network's global Microsoft and L'Oréal businesses.
Diamond praised Macdonald's new-business performance as well as his management of McCann's diversified offerings.
"We live in an omniplatform world, and what most of our clients are looking for is an integrated approach and bringing our marketing partners together on their behalf," Diamond said in a late-night call from China. "Chris has already shown his tremendous capabilities in doing that. But this promotion goes beyond that. He's a true leader and gets the best out of our people."
In the new role, Macdonald's responsibilities will expand to include Casanova//McCann, McCann Detroit, twofifteenmccann, McCann Minneapolis and MacLaren McCann in Canada, which consists of agency offices in Toronto, Calgary and Vancouver. Before taking on the job of New York president in 2013, Macdonald had been CEO of McCann London, which he first joined in 2005 as client services director. He'll continue to report to McCann Worldgroup president Luca Lindner.
While Macdonald's title is not new, the additional responsibilities are. The last exec to serve as North American president, Robert LePlae, joined the agency in 2009 after working as head of TBWA North America. Unlike Macdonald, LePlae's responsibilities did not include the network's New York office, which then was run by Thom Gruhler, an account exec who was close to the agency's Verizon account.