James Cloete has joined 7 Different Kinds of Smoke as Creative Partner. The move sees Cloete end a highly successful big agency career to join a smaller (for now!) shop and grow the business with its founding partners.
After graduating from Vega James worked at Sonnenburg Murphy Leo Burnett, Network BBDO, Metropolitan Republic and the Jupiter Drawing Room, before joining Draftfcb as Executive Creative Director in 2009.
Over the years James has worked across multiple blue chip brands, both local and international, creating some of South Africa's most loved and awarded advertising for brands like Coca-Cola, MTN, 5FM, Old Mutual, Childline, Cell C, ABSA, SASOL, Toyota and General Motors to list but a few.
Amongst many career highs, James was central to the Jupiter Drawing Room's "Perfect Storm" when the JHB agency won four pitches in four days totalling over a billion rand in new business.
He's enjoyed some luck at Cannes, D&AD, One Show and Clio's over the years as well at South Africa's premiere shows: The Loerie Awards, The Eagles and The Pendorings. In 2013 James judged the New York Festival's branded content category and the Loerie Awards Film Craft category.
7 Different Kinds of Smoke's founding Creative Partner, Neil Clarence, comments, "James is a unique talent and one we've watched for a number of years. It's a coup for us to bring him aboard and with James at the helm we hope to bring across more top creative talent to join an already world-class team."
7 Different Kinds of Smoke MD, Ryan Van Jaarsveld, adds, "There was a lengthy courting process as we had to make sure we shared the same vision; a vision of brands developing immersive transmedia campaigns that drive sales. James' TTL creative and strategic abilities and his big brand experience are a welcome addition to our arsenal as we gear up to grow."
Pausing for thought, James looks out the boardroom windows in their Greenside offices, and then adds: "My partners are very kind. The truth is that 7's aggressively entrepreneurial spirit and non-traditional approach is something I've watched and admired from the sidelines for some time - and I jumped at the first chance to join them. I'm extremely excited to have become a part of this great outfit and together with my new partners I look forward confidently to the future."
About 7 Different Kinds of Smoke
7 Different Kinds of Smoke's goal is to approach advertising from the point of view of the consumer, making engagement the main focus and sales the primary objective.
If your brand needs advertising that sees it interact directly with its target audience, then get in touch with 7 Different Kinds of Smoke to talk about immersive transmedia campaigns.
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