I was born in Tangiers and “became a man” in Paris. I was very young when I sensed that my career would be closely linked with the field of marketing, communication and, why not, cars (I’ve always been fascinated by cars…). Passion and action are two pillars in my life, and what I like most is to inspire people, help forge good relations, discover talent and, above all, stimulate and enrich their thought-process. It all gives meaning to my personal and professional life. This is the spirit that moved me to write; I’ve published my first book, “Nunca tires la toalla” (Never give up) about things I learnt in advertising and which apply to (almost) everything in life, and in which I share experience and things I’ve learnt.
Being born in Tangiers, when it was an international city, gave me a singularly different and gratifying childhood and adolescence. There, Catholics, Jews and Muslims all lived together in harmony; Spaniards, French, Italians and Anglo-Saxons co-existed and our lives were mutually enriched. Tangiers was an entertaining, stimulating city. The French Lycée gave us an education and instilled values of freedom and self-discipline. Those so likeable teachers have not been wiped from my memory.
I studied Business Administration at the HEC (Paris), and after training stints in a radio station, Europe No. 1, and Chrysler in the USA, I completed my degree. My first four years’ work were in the sales promotion sector.
I went to live in Madrid when I was 26 years old to set up and run a sales promotion agency. But I realised that power and size were concentrated in the full-service advertising agency, which is what prevailed at the time. So when I was 29 I founded Delvico, with one client, Citröen.
From then on, 35 years passed at breathtaking speed. In 1985, we joined Bates Worldwide when Delvico was sold to the Bates Group. A few years earlier I founded Central Media (today Zenith Optimedia) and was its chairman from 1982 to 1997.
I held a number of international positions in the Bates Worldwide organisation: C.O.O. of Bates Europe and Africa and Chairman of Bates Latin America. So I had the opportunity to reorganise agencies in many different countries, from Finland to South Africa and Argentina.
I have worked with a large number of important clients, such as Citröen, Mercedes Benz, Henkel, Mars, SC Johnson, Gallina Blanca, Open Bank, SEAT, Día, Sanitas, Telefónica Móviles, Turespaña, Allied Domecq, BAT, Carbonell, the ONCE…”.
For six years I was on the board of directors of the AEAP (the Spanish Association of Advertising Agencies) and I co-founded the San Sebastian Advertising Festival (now, El Sol). I have been a member of the jury of many advertising festivals, such as the FIAP (where I chaired the jury), Eurobest, the EFI awards, the “Anuncios” awards, and Cannes Festival, where I was a jury member on three occasions.
In April 2008, I was awarded the "Best Professional Career" prize by the advertising students at Antonio Nebrija University (Madrid).
In March 2011 , I was inducted into the Advertising Hall of Fame (Academia de la Publicidad) in Madrid.
I like reading, I like the sea, I like ski-ing, I like to listen and I like giving, more than receiving. Life’s road is what counts. It’s the journey that matters to me, more than the destination.
I also give lectures and am a business consultant, which I enjoy because it keeps me in close contact with the executives who are now in the front line of fire.
I like to feel I’m in a thought-provoking and ongoing learning process.
Some books that have helped me in my personal development: