Speculation confirmed: Smart to depart

Brent Smart_81136The official word is in: Colenso BBDO will farewell managing director Brent Smart at the end of this year as he takes up the reins at BBDO West, based in San Francisco.

Smart spent close to five years with the agency, joining Colenso BBDO in 2005 as Group Account Director. He was made Managing Director in 2007 at the age of 33.

Smart says in a press release: “It’s incredibly gut wrenching for me to leave Colenso BBDO. I have loved every minute of my time here and we have built a very special agency.  I’ll really miss the great partnership of Nick Worthington and James Hurman and even though he’s not around as much anymore, my very special mentor and mate Rog MacDonnell.  But I’ll miss everyone who works at Colenso and all our clients.

“I’ve always wanted to work in the States and it says a lot about Colenso BBDO that it has been the right platform for me to get there … And it’s hard to find a cooler city in the world than San Francisco.”

Jim Moser, Clemenger Group’s New Zealand CEO says Smart has made a massive contribution to the business.

“When I arrived here a year ago, Brent made it very clear that he had a desire to work in the United States . . . While we did not want to lose Brent, he had career aspirations that needed to be satisfied.  The key thing was trying to keep him in the BBDO network which we’ve accomplished successfully,” he says.

Smart cites Yellow Treehouse, Deadline Courier’s exploding billboard and Vodafone Fold (now running in eight markets) as his favourite campaigns.

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Smart, a “proud Aussie”, says he will miss New Zealand.

“It’s a really special place to work and one of the most creative places on the planet. I feel very lucky to have worked here.”

An announcement regarding his replacement will be made over the coming weeks.

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