Thompson Joins Y&R as Global Planning Chief

Young & Rubicam has recruited former Saatchi & Saatchi executive Sandy Thompson to become global planning director.

In the role, Thompson succeeds John Gerzema, although Gerzema had a different title: global chief insights officer. Gerzema now shifts to president of Y&R’s BrandAsset Consulting unit. The president’s position is new.

At Saatchi, Thompson was worldwide director of strategic planning. She left the agency last year, and this year helped launch a consultancy called fixt.

At Y&R, she’ll be reunited with Tony Granger, a former colleague at Saatchi. Granger was New York chief creative officer at Publicis Groupe’s Saatchi and is global chief creative officer at WPP Group’s Y&R.

In a statement, Granger described Thompson as “laser-focused on finding insights that help clients connect with people in a really meaningful way.” He added that “creatives love her because she doesn’t complicate things.”

Thompson had spent 15 years at Saatchi, working at the shop’s offices in Toronto, Hong Kong and New York. Before becoming global planning director in 2007, she was head of planning for North America.