Nick Boakes, a founder director of the financial PR group Ludgate
following its management buy-out from Hill Murray seven years ago, is to
join Grandfield as deputy managing director later this month.
Boakes, head of Ludgate’s corporate division for the last three years,
is returning to Grandfield - where he started his career in the 1980s -
just three months after Ludgate was acquired by McCann-Erickson for more
than pounds 10 million.
His stake, said to be a ’significant minority’ of above five per cent,
is believed to have netted him over pounds 500,000.
The departure of Grandfield finance director Brigid Wilkins earlier this
year opened the way for Boakes to buy into the agency - becoming the
first new equity holder in Grandfield since its MBO from Saatchi and
Saatchi (now Cordiant) in 1993.
Grandfield managing director Charles Cook said Boakes would take over
day-to-day responsibility for the firm, leaving him to concentrate on
’key clients, new business and strategic issues’.
He added: ’He’s helped Ludgate grow seven-fold and we hope he’ll help us
do something similar.’
Recently Boakes has concentrated on developing Ludgate’s business in the
IT/multimedia sector - an area in which McCann already has a strong
presence through its hi-tech agency Weber PR.
’The events of the last few months have given me the opportunity to look
at where to take my career,’ said Boakes. ’What Charles (Cook) has at
Grandfield is something very interesting and not dissimilar to Ludgate
when we did the MBO.’
Unusually Ludgate’s directors are not tied to the company by an earn-out
agreement, although they will receive share options in McCann’s parent
company Interpublic, phased over four years.
It is understood that Boakes and the other directors also have
individual penalty clauses in the event that they leave early.