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Biographies

John W Morgan 

Business Career 

John started in advertising in 1964 as an office boy and then trained as a commercial artist.  Having noticed that there weren’t too many old commercial artists around, he decided to move on to the account management side of advertising where he has been ever since. 

In a perfect example of being in the right place at the right time, he became Managing Director of his first advertising agency at the age of 23.  Seven years later he joined Woolward Royds - then Scotland’s largest advertising agency - as Managing Director of their Glasgow agency.  In 1980 he started his own Agency, Morgan Associates, which was later to become The Morgan Partnership.   

That business failed in 2001 when it lost its biggest account, Hilton, at which point John remortgaged and started again. The new agency, merle (named after the old Scots word for Blackbird) now handles brand and communications for a diverse range of clients including Highland Spring, Robert Wiseman Dairies, Arran Aromatics, RBS, Tyreplus (part of the Kwik-Fit Group), The Whisky Shop and Tunnock’s.

merle also created the brand strategy which helped build Dobbies to the UK’s foremost Garden Centre chain only for that business to change its agency at the start of this year, proving, once again, that nothing in life is guaranteed. 

John served on the Board of Scottish Enterprise, Forth Valley for five years and is a Founder member and ex Vice Chairman of the Entrepreneurial Exchange. 

Personal 

John was born in Glasgow in 1946.  When he was three, the family moved to Greenock where he was educated at Greenock Academy.  In the year he finished school the Morgans moved to Bridge of Allan, where he has lived ever since.   

He describes the process as ”Glasgow born, Greenock bred, Bridge of Allan refined!” 

John is married to Morag and has two grown up daughters – Megan and Erika, one granddaughter, Katie and one grandson, Ally.  

John and Morag have an online gift shop specialising in hand-made, luxury pewter chess sets based on the Battle of Bannockburn and the life and works of Robert Burns. 

He enjoys writing, watching football (Rangers), going to movies, speaking and his family. John is a regular speaker on the After Dinner and Burns circuits and is Chairman of the Old Manor Burns Club in Bridge of Allan. He also chairs his own company’s annual celebration in Glasgow’s Trades Hall, better known as “Fat Bob and Soapy Soutar’s Braw Burns Supper”. And it is!!  

Natasha Marshall 

Natasha is a surface designer who creates collections of fabrics and wallpapers for the interior industry that are used by interior shops, architects and interior designers worldwide.  She designs her own ranges that sell under the Natasha Marshall brand as well as all the ranges for various clients including Wemyss (www.wemyssfabrics.com) and Sekers (www.sekersfabrics.co.uk). 

Natasha set up her first business in 1997 after graduating from Glasgow School of Art in 1996, with a loan from the Princes Scottish Youth Business Trust. Natasha is a board member of PSYBT, The Scottish Textiles Association and SBAAT. 

She is the Managing Director of Natasha Marshall Ltd and a partner in a property company Otago Developments.  The office the companies are run from is an old printworks that thepartners of Otago Developments developed in 2008.  In 2009 this building won Best Small Building in Scotland from the RIBA and GIA awards.

 

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Venue information

Kama Sutra, Glasgow 331 Sauchiehall Street
Glasgow
G2 3HW

0141 332 0055

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Chairman

Natasha Marshall, Natasha Marshall Fabrics & Wallcoverings, www.natashamarshall.com

Speakers

  • John Morgan, merle, www.merleagency.com
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Registered in Scotland. Company registration number SC160976.
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