Dentsu creative appoints Perez as CCO for Chicago

Pedro Pérez has been named the chief creative officer of Dentsu Creative’s Chicago office. Pérez, who previously served as the co-chief creative officer of Energy BBDO for the last three years alongside Josh Gross, is the first significant hire since Dentsu consolidated its creative agencies into one entity in June. He will report to Dentsu International Global Chief Creative Officer Fred Levron.

Along with his Chicago duties, Pérez will also lead Dentsu’s creatives in San Francisco and work globally depending on clients. Pérez said a big reason for the move was that he was attracted to the “transformation” that Dentsu Creative has been going through recently.

“I’ve always been a fan of Fred [Levron] and the work that he has been doing his entire career,” Pérez said. “Every place that he has been, he helped transform the place into creative firepower. When we started talking, the challenge of the transformation of Dentsu Creative and the principles of creativity and advertising in service of our client businesses was very appealing to me.”

Gross will remain in his position as chief creative officer of Energy BBDO, according to a spokesman for the agency.

During his time at Energy BBDO, Pérez worked with clients such as Mars Wrigley, Bayer, and SC Johnson. One of the most notable campaigns from his tenure was Extra Gum’s “For When It’s Time” campaign that launched in May last year. Pérez also took home a Gold and Silver Lion for Guns Down America and Champion Sportswear, respectively, at Cannes this year.

According to West Region President of Dentsu Creative Laurel Flatt, the new hire doesn’t indicate a change in office structure or operations.

“We’re just focusing on aligning it all under the master brand of Densu Creative,” Flatt said. “So truthfully it doesn’t change at all how we’ve been operating. We’re still working across resources and across the different specialties that we have.”

Currently, Dentsu Creative employees in Chicago have access to all the office spaces which were previously branded under their former creative agencies, such as McGarryBowen and 360i. This has been the case in the U.S. since 2021, when the transformation began internally. Flatt says getting people to buy into a single Dentsu Creative has been “a lot easier” than she thought it would be.

“It came from the way they [Dentsu] set it up, they made us all partners together,” Flatt said. “Everyone who led these different entities had a voice in what we were doing.”

Some of Dentsu Creative’s Chicago clients include Disney Parks, Hershey, Marriott, Famous Footwear and Olive Garden. The San Francisco team manages social for Intel, among other clients. A spokeswoman for Dentsu declined to disclose whether there will be a replacement named for Menno Kluin, Dentsu Creative’s U.S. chief creative officer before he left to join Ogilvy in July, but clarified that there are more hires on the way.

“As we continue our evolution into Dentsu Creative, it is important to onboard leaders who share our vision for building brands and businesses through the power of creativity in every creative format—Pedro is that leader,” Levron said in a statement. “His creative vision is playful, driven by his limitless curiosity and inspired by the varied ways we live our lives and engage with brands and products around the world.”


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