What happens in Vegas does not always stay in Vegas.
At least that 's true for Las Vegas-based R&R Partners, an agency that has expanded into six cities, including the Los Angeles market in the last year -- and which, by the way, is responsible for the "What happens in Vegas, stays in Vegas" campaign for the Las Vegas Convention and Visitors Authority.
R&R has recruited Sean Hardwick from DraftFCB's Orange County office to expand its Los Angeles footprint; he'll helm the office as the agency's senior VP-executive managing director.
In the newly created role, Mr. Hardwick will be responsible for growing the agency's new business prospects and bringing the elements of the L.A. office together, said R&R CEO Billy Vassiliadis, who called Mr. Hardwick "the glue" of the LA venture. R&R's LA shop has been formed through the acquisitions of smaller agencies, such as Ballpark and Kaiser Marketing, and through the recruitment of David Ellis, formerly of Veo Group, and Phil Motta, previously of Motta & Morris.
Mr. Hardwick was promoted in April to senior VP-director of account management, integration & business development at Interpublic Group of Cos.' DraftFCB. Prior to that , he served as senior VP-group management director, working on accounts including Taco Bell and Del Monte.
Mr. Vassiliadis said that once the Los Angeles office started enjoying organic and new-business growth, "we needed to bring someone in and move the whole office forward," adding that Mr. Hardwick is going to "take us to a dramatic new level in the next couple years."
"There is room in L.A. to be a new breed of agency -- nimble, smart, creative and accountable -- without all the bureaucracy of the big guys," said Mr. Hardwick. "R&R Partners LA is already on its way to being that . My hope is to add growth to an already vibrant agency culture that very few know is there in L.A."
Clients in the Los Angeles office include Western Digital, Norwegian Cruise Line, Boeing and Pepperdine University. Mr. Vassiliadis said that R&R hopes to grow a robust public relations function in Los Angeles and is also eyeing the Denver market for expansion.
R&R recently inked a joint venture with longtime auto marketer Mike Jackson called Jackson & Partners, an agency that focuses exclusively on retail auto advertising and helping the segment with reputation management, search advertising and strategy, and geo-targeted ads. It also brought on Matt Mason, a founding partner of Las Vegas-based Sarkissian Mason, after what was described as an amicable breakup of that agency.