Is Brazil the New Sweden for U.S. Agency Recruiters?

Is Brazil the New Sweden for U.S. Agency Recruiters?

Chamber Articles Category: Culture Post Date: 06/14/17 Source: Ad Age By: Laurel Wentz
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When Wieden & Kennedy hired an Argentine creative in 1997 for a job in Portland, Ore., José Mollá was a rarity. And when he tried to hire a creative team from Brazil, no one wanted to come.
"It was kind of unheard of to have talent from Latin America in the U.S.," Mollá said. "And now it's super common."

Today, Mollá chairs The One Club, the prominent organization for honoring creativity. And The Community, the successful Miami shop that he and brother Joaquín started, is often the first U.S. agency for Latin American creative teams that later work at shops like Droga5, R/GA and David & Goliath, he said.

One of his former creative directors, Gustavo Lauria, opened a New York shop called We Believers in 2014. Lauria won four Lions at Cannes last year and will be a U.S. judge on the Titanium and Integrated jury this year. His award-show blockbuster, which is also turning into an environmentally friendly business, is "Edible Six-Pack Rings," a biodegradable version of the plastic six-pack rings that can harm marine life when discarded.

Latin American creative leaders are the new Swedes. For years, Swedish creatives took over high-profile creative roles at U.S. agencies, before mostly returning to Scandinavia. One of the last to depart, Andreas Dahlqvist, left his post as chief creative officer at Grey New York in April to become chief creative officer of Nord DDB in his native Sweden.

Increasingly, Latin American creatives are stepping into U.S. leadership roles as chief creative officers or executive creative directors, or running their own agencies, like Anselmo Ramos at David in Miami. After surviving trial by fire in their often less-than-stable home countries, they do more with less, and adapt quickly and creatively to just about anything. And they do it all with a touch of emotion that plays well in the work they create.

In one big shift, Brazilian creatives, once reluctant to relocate from their sunny, high-paying market, are flocking to the U.S. For many, that change of heart is a combination of disillusionment over Brazil's endless corruption scandals, a depressed local economy and a U.S. market that increasingly welcomes them with better career opportunities. Read Full Article