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'A wonderful man': GroupM's Adam Smith dies aged 58

04 Jan 2020  |  David Pidgeon 
'A wonderful man': GroupM's Adam Smith dies aged 58

GroupM's long-serving forecast specialist, Adam Smith, has died following a battle with cancer.

A well-known industry name, the futures director launched GroupM's forecasting practice in 2006 and was the author of many popular and highly regarded reports, including This Year Next year.

Smith had a long struggle with cancer and passed away on December 27th, aged 58. The husband of Maria and the father of Poppy (12) and Sam (14), he is also survived by his mother Barbara and his sister Diana. His father Jack, who died in 2017, worked for the Independent Broadcasting Authority.

Prior to joining GroupM Smith worked for Zenith where he was head of publications, working for Derek Southon after a brief stint as a TV buyer.

Outside of work, Smith was a councillor for Windsor and Maidenhead and took on duties as a school governor for most of the last decade.

He was also an enthusiast of the 1960s and sports cars of the era and was an expert on, and wrote a biography of, the pop artist Pauline Boty.

Most recently many of his copies of Vogue were used in a Mary Quant exhibit at the Victoria and Albert Museum.

The centre of his interest, however, was the Beatles and he co-authored The Beatles London with Mark Lewisohn and Piet Schreuders.

The former GroupM boss Kelly Clark said Smith had been living "courageously" with cancer for many years, adding that he was a source of "inspiration, insight, friendship and humour."

"He always asked us challenging questions and the answers illuminated the data and created interesting stories. He made GroupM and WPP the industry leader in understanding media markets, and in defining the important contribution of marketing to the business world and the broader global economy.

"More importantly, he was a wonderful man, husband, father, colleague, and a true friend to many of us. Adam’s intelligence and wit were razor-sharp."

At Smith's request, donations are being made to The Thames Hospice.

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