Jon Bond Is Building a Marketing-Services 'Cooperative'

New Entity Meant to Rival MDC Partners, Other Holding Companies

By Published on .

NEW YORK (AdAge.com) -- Four months after departing Kirshenbaum Bond Senecal & Partners, the New York agency he co-founded in 1987, Jon Bond -- backed with some $100 million in financing -- is setting out to build a new marketing services entity to rival Kirshenbaum's owner, MDC Partners, and other holding companies, according to several industry executives.

Jon Bond
Jon Bond
The entity is being dubbed a "cooperative" to prospective partners and touted as an alternative structure to the current advertising and marketing holding-company model. Mr. Bond is said to have met with some 80 to 100 marketing services firms and tech outfits , in the U.S. and in Europe with a range of specialties. People familiar with the situation said Mr. Bond has raised $100 million from multiple resources and has invested his own money into the venture, too.

He has pulled the trigger on investing in a handful of firms so far, including: Crimson Hexagon, a Cambridge, Mass., provider of real-time market research; Klout, a San Francisco influencer tracking tool; Boston-based Dataxu, a demand-side platform; and Boulder, Colo.-based Victors & Spoils, which calls itself an ad agency built on crowd-sourcing principles. The latter attracted the most attention in adland, partly because the shop put out a press release announcing Mr. Bond's investment, and partly because the principals at the shop hail from MDC's premiere agency, Crispin Porter & Bogusky.

"It's almost like he's gone back to school to relearn marketing services in the past year from a fresh perspective," said one person with knowledge of his plans. "In his vision I see agencies might be a part of it, but I don't see him building the next Kirshenbaum Bond."

Disdain for old models
That's not surprising considering Mr. Bond's vocal disdain for old-school agency models. In the Victors & Spoils announcement last month, he stated: "Running a traditional agency today is like being captain of the Titanic, and Victors & Spoils the iceberg. As an investor, I stand behind new agency models designed to challenge the 'unsinkable.'"

Although plenty in the marketplace are buzzing about Mr. Bond's plans, he's staying mum on the venture for now. Asked for comment, he said "I'm not announcing anything yet."

MDC officials didn't return e-mails about the matter.

One potential name for the entity? "2Morrow."

According to a registration with GoDaddy.com, Mr. Bond reserved the URL 2morrowltd.com. The site as it is now simply says "Tomorrow Is Coming" in white font on a black background. There doesn't appear to be a Facebook page or Twitter handle that's been grabbed for the entity yet; a Facebook listing for 2morrow appears to be a Bulgarian clothing store, while @2morrow on Twitter is held by a woman named Helen in Moscow, though @2morrowltd is still available.

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