Jones departs GPJ UK following restructure

The George P. Johnson Company (GPJ) group managing director for Europe Neil Jones has left the agency by mutual consent. The decision follows a restructure and also the sale of the business by its US parent to an Employee Share Ownership Programme, which only involved US employees.

Jones joined GPJ in September 2002 in order to integrate three recently acquired UK businesses, manage the IBM account in Germany and raise the profile of the global integrated agency as a serious competitor across Europe. He merged Project Worldwide, Conference Planners and the IBM account under the banner GPJ UK.

Jones is currently serving a six-month non-compete agreement while considering his next move. "I now consider my formal education in all sides of the events world to be complete so I am really excited about what opportunities lie ahead," he said. "I am happy to be moving on and leaving GPJ as a serious business with a unique proposition, and also poised for the next stage of its growth and development."

The internal restructure has seen the European managing director layer removed and the focus from the US shift onto its large global accounts such as Cisco, Unilever and IBM, now headed up in the UK by Gary Harvey.

Kim Myhre has been put in charge of GPJ UK client support services while the UK business focuses on account work for clients including O2 and Vodafone.

GPJ president Larry Vallee said: "As is our corporate policy, GPJ does not comment on the status of former employees. Our strategy continues to focus on strengthening our position as an integrated event marketing agency with offices located in major business centres around the globe. Our London commercial centre is an important piece of GPJ's worldwide network."

Prior to joining GPJ UK Jones was European managing director at organiser Advanstar Communications, where he was responsible for the acquisition of the London Brand Licensing Show from Single Market Events in 2000.

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