Osman joined Saatchi & Saatchi as managing partner in May 2020, after an impressive 18 years in the industry. Having run her own advertising agency for almost five years and thereafter spending 14 years at Ogilvy South Africa (nine of those years spent leading teams in upper management roles), Osman has been described as the perfect candidate to lead the ‘Nothing is Impossible’ agency into 2023 and beyond.
“We couldn’t have found a better fit if we tried. This plan has been in the making for two years now so I am very happy to finally bring it to life” explains previous Saatchi & Saatchi managing director Quinton Luck, who has already handed over the reins to Osman.
“Firdous has been working closely with me over the past two years to understand the Saatchi & Saatchi business, as well as the wider Publicis Groupe. I’m excited to see her visions come to life and with her strong people focus, I feel confident that I’m leaving the business in very capable hands. I wish her the very best and know confidently that she’ll bring massive success to the role.”
In addition to a wealth of experience, Osman also brings with her a long line of accolades, including over 50 effective and creative awards – from Grand Prix at Loeries to Gold at Cannes. Most recently she received the SA Women Leader 2021 award and was appointed to the board of the Cape Town Film Festival.
Talking about her new position, which is effective this month, Osman said: “I am delighted to be leading Saatchi & Saatchi as their new MD and can’t wait to get stuck in and deliver against our strategy and our vision. To me, the secret to building a successful agency lies in developing and growing its people and bringing diversity into the workplace. Continuing to foster trust in our people, our creative offering and spirit, as well as our work, are just a few of the things I am excited to bring to my new role.”
Publicis Groupe Africa senior vice president, Jonty Fisher concludes: “We are very proud to have Firdous heading up the Saatchi & Saatchi fold. Her top-notch skillset and exceptional level of experience is undeniable and so is the success she’s already brought to the agency. We’re very excited about what is to come.”