NEW YORK (AdAge.com) -- Nine months after M.T. Carney left her post as partner at the U.S. operations of Naked Communications, the Photon Group-backed shop has recruited a replacement.
Effective next month, planning veteran Carla Serrano, who most recently served as chief strategy officer at the New York office of Omnicom Group's TBWA/Chiat/Day, will join Naked as its third partner, helping to oversee the agency's growth.
"I've always envied Naked from afar," Ms. Serrano said. "If you think about where the industry is going ... the kind of model and thought leadership that Naked has allows them to be able to flex and adapt really well. When the moment came, I really couldn't resist it."
After launching her career at Chiat Day in Toronto, Ms. Serrano briefly worked at BBDO and later at Berlin Cameron, boomeranging back to TBWA a couple of times in between. In her most recent role, Ms. Serrano worked closely with Kraft as a strategic adviser helping to oversee the creation of Being, an Omnicom agency.
The Naked post will allow Ms. Serrano to continue working with Kraft, as well as other clients such as Coca-Cola and Johnson & Johnson. She'll also reunite with Naked partner Neal Davies, who years ago worked with Ms. Serrano at Chiat Day on the MasterFoods account.
"We took our time in terms of hunting far and wide," said Paul Woolmington, partner at Naked. "The search took us not just throughout North America but to Europe and beyond, and we found a kindred spirit." The hire comes as Naked has been focused on adding talent and embarking on a U.S. expansion late last year, when it added a Minneapolis outpost.
TBWA is expected to fill Ms. Serrano's position down the road. "It's bittersweet," said Jamie Gallo, president, TBWA/Chiat/Day, New York. "She is a true Chiat Day-er and an incredible talent, and we wish her well," he said, adding: "We hope she comes back for her fourth tour of duty."