South African adman Mike Abel is well known for his outspoken opinions and his advertising expertise. The founder and chief executive of M&C Saatchi Abel now has a book out in which he discusses the lessons of the last 10 years of his career – and why he thinks business leaders have an obligation to speak out.


Local advertising guru Mike Abel’s latest book, titled Willing & Abel: Lessons from a Decade in Crisis, distills his experiences setting up his own agency in a particularly tumultuous time for South Africa.


Abel had a stratospheric career in local advertising from his early twenties, rising to run the Ogilvy agency nationally. After being at Ogilvy for 16 years, he was approached by M&C Saatchi in Australia to take the CEO role in that country in 2008, which he did – spurred by the impending presidency of Jacob Zuma and his experience of an armed robbery.


Daily Maverick CEO Styli Charalambous, talking to Abel as part of Daily Maverick’s webinar series, commented that South African advertising folk seem to do very well internationally.


“I think that the way we approach problem solving is unique and fresh and innovative,” Abel replied. He said that…

SOURCE: Rebecca Davis