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Cilla Snowball: The new boss of AMV

In the fashionable bars of Noho and Fitzrovia - the West End districts that make up London's adland - the whisper of the name "Snowball" is unlikely to get the barman reaching for his bottle of Warninks.

Cilla Snowball, a slight woman with a ready smile, is the talk of the British advertising industry, having risen this month to become chairman of its biggest & most powerful group. "I've now got used to the initial reaction over my name," she says, "which is always one of unrestrained laughter. People don't hesitate to laugh in your face." Snowball, who is 47, grew up in Staffordshire as Cilla Chadwick, then married adman Geoff Snowball. "The Americans think I've invented it. They can't believe that it's a real name. I don't know if they invent their names but everyone thinks I'm shallow enough to have invented mine."

She may share a name with a popular Seventies cocktail (one part advocaat, two parts lemonade & a dash of lime cordial) but she holds the accounts for Guinness, Famous Grouse, Pepsi & Tropicana juice. Not to mention overseeing some of the most memorable & long-running campaigns in modern British advertising, for The Economist (latest tagline: Sparks & Mensa), Sainsbury's (Jamie Oliver) & Walkers crisps (Gary Lineker).


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