Julie Mercer joins education practice of Cairneagle as Partner

02 April 2019 Consultancy.uk

Management consultancy Cairneagle Associates has appointed a new Partner to its London office. Julie Mercer arrives at the firm having spent more than 20 years with Big Four firm Deloitte, where she was also a Partner.

Cairneagle Associates is a consulting firm specialising in education, media and technology. The firm deploys small teams of professionals to help clients develop and implement their strategies. The firm subsequently delivers high impact work without unnecessary disruption. The firm’s partners’ backgrounds and length of service – both in consulting and industry – help Cairneagle to engage as principals directly with the leaders of client organisations.

As the firm looks to prepare for heightened demand in 2019, as a number of pressures come to bear for businesses across the UK, Cairneagle has announced the appointment of Julie Mercer as Partner. She will lead the development of Cairneagle’s higher education and operational consulting practices. Mercer brings more than two decades of experience to that role, having worked with clients to help design and deliver new operating models to improve service design and quality, reduce cost, improve productivity, open up new markets and grow revenues.

Julie Mercer joins education practice of Cairneagle as Partner

Mercer spent the last 22 years of her career at Big Four firm Deloitte, where she was latterly the Global Education Lead, responsible for setting up and growing their education practice in the UK. For the last nine years, Mercer was a Partner at Deloitte, before leaving for a new challenge this year.

Over the course of her time with Deloitte, Mercer worked at all levels within the UK education system, supporting organisations spanning early years’ provision to higher education. She has advised public, private and international education providers as well as governments, and she has worked on education systems in the UK, India, Australia, Japan, the Middle East and the USA.

Rupert Barclay, Managing Partner of Cairneagle commented, “Julie represents a huge addition to our team. She will enable Cairneagle to offer our clients a much wider range of services and help address the increasing need to support them beyond strategy, for example, helping them transform their business operations. Julie’s deep experience and networks in the Higher Education market strengthens our ability to support this critical part of the sector through significant uncertainty and change in the coming months and years. We are very pleased to have Julie on board.”

Julie Mercer herself added, “I am delighted to be joining the Cairneagle team and bringing something truly distinctive to our clients right across the education sector. Together with my new colleagues at Cairneagle, I believe that we have a tremendous platform on which to develop a world-class consulting offer in higher education strategy and operational consulting, serving clients across the world.”

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Accenture's Rothco installs new Executive Creative Director

24 April 2019 Consultancy.uk

Jen Speirs is set to take over from Alan Kelly as the Executive Creative Director of Accenture Interactive-owned agency Rothco. Speirs arrives as Kelly takes up the role of Chief Creative Officer at the firm.

Rothco is a full-service creative agency based in Dublin. Founded in 1995, the firm contains more than 150 strategic, creative, technology, design, project management and production professionals located in Ireland’s capital city. The agency strategically plans, designs and produces powerful communications campaigns across Europe for numerous iconic brands, including Tesco, Heineken and Lyons. Internationally recognised for its prowess in the sector, Rothco notably found success at the Cannes Lions awards in both 2015 and 2016.

Such success inevitably drew the eye of Accenture during its extended spending spree to strengthen its digital design and advertising offerings, housed under the Accenture Interactive moniker. A year after purchasing Rothco, Accenture Interactive has since continued this push into the advertising space, acquiring New York and London-based agency Droga5 earlier this month, and adding illustrious clients such as HBO, Amazon and The New York Times to its roster of clients. Despite its purchase, Rothco has also been undergoing its own period of change, however.

With the news that long-term incumbent Alan Kelly had won a promotion from his position as Executive Creative Director (ECD), the agency commenced a hunt for his replacement. Kelly joined Rothco nine years ago as a Copywriter, and has now worked his way up to the role of Chief Creative Officer. Assuming that office, he will pass on his previous role to Jen Speirs, who exits BMF Australia, relocating half way around the world to fill the vacancy.

Accenture's Rothco installs new Executive Creative Director

Speirs was appointed BMF’s Deputy Executive Creative Director in March 2018, having joined BMF as a creative director in 2016 from her previous role at Foxtel, where she was a Freelance Creative Director. Following her arrival at BMF, she worked across brands such as McDonald’s, Carefree, Arnott’s, Berlei, TAL, Bonds, BWS, UN Women and the Workplace Gender Equality Agency, while her work has picked up awards at NY Festivals, Clio, AWARD, Cannes, Effies, Media Federation, Caples, and Spikes Asia. Speirs also worked at DDB Sydney as Creative Director for six years, with clients such as Telstra, Lipton and Johnson & Johnson.

Commenting on her new challenge, Speirs said, "When I look at a lot of Rothco's work, like JFK Unsilenced, the #takenotice breast cancer campaign on the Molly Malone Statue, Sleeping Flags – it all has that perfect combination of creativity, innovation and craft… So the opportunity to go and be a part of that, and work with the awesome people I’ve met so far, was far too good to say no to. I can’t wait to get over there and get stuck in.”

Remarking on Speirs’ arrival, Kelly added, "I am chuffed we have poached someone as incredibly talented as Jen Speirs. I think it’s a testament to the work we are doing in Rothco that we are attracting world-class talent like Jen to these shores. Jen is a super addition to the team as she is both gifted and decent, two qualities we always look for when we hire. I also may have told her that Dublin's weather is pretty much the same as Sydney's – hopefully, she hasn't fact-checked this yet."

Related: Accenture's push into the creative sector is an identity crisis.