Matt Owen joins Burson-Marsteller as consumer practice chair

Direct Line Group head of media campaigns Matt Owen has joined Burson-Marsteller, replacing Philippe Pendaries as chair of the agency's consumer practice.

Matt Owen: chair of Burson-Marsteller's consumer practice
Matt Owen: chair of Burson-Marsteller's consumer practice
Owen started work on Monday, having left the insurance group a month ago after his role was included in a wave of 2,000 redundancies.

Pendaries is leaving BM this Friday after five years to pursue an opportunity that he declined to reveal at the time of publication.

Owen got to know BM last November when Direct Line brand Churchill dropped Martin Clunes as its ad frontman after he was disqualified from driving for notching up 12 points on his driving licence for speeding. The agency was brought in to help the brand handle the story.

BM’s 12-strong consumer practice works for clients including Ford, Danone, Swissair, Invista and Skrill. It has been chaired by Pendaries for the past three-and-a-half years.

Owen worked at Direct Line for six years following an agency career including time at Lansons and iJack (later Brando).

Amanda Pierce, CEO of Burson-Marsteller UK, said: "Matt had the combination of skills and experience in both consumer and digital campaigning that we were looking for.

"He has a strong track record in building teams and leading them to success and is the first of a number of senior appointments we will be making to the new leadership team at Burson-Marsteller."

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