Sergio Zyman Launches (Another) Consultancy

Ex-Coke CMO Has Cut Ties With Zyman Group, Now Owned by MDC Partners

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BATAVIA, Ohio (AdAge.com) -- The man who brought the world New Coke and Coca-Cola Classic has apparently applied a similar concept to marketing consulting.

Sergio Zyman
Sergio Zyman
Sergio Zyman has launched a consulting firm bearing his name, apparently leaving Atlanta and the world with two consultancies named after the high-profile former Coca-Cola Co. chief marketing officer. In an e-mail that circulated this week, according to people familiar with the matter, Mr. Zyman made it clear he is no longer associated with the Zyman Group, his original consulting firm, purchased by MDC Partners in 2005. His new consultancy is called Sergio Zyman & Co.

An executive assistant who answered the phone at his new firm said Mr. Zyman was traveling overseas and could not immediately be reached for comment. A second call to reach him was also unsuccessful.

Miles Nadal, CEO of MDC Partners, said Mr. Zyman retired from Zyman Group about 18 months ago. "We've acquired Sergio's equity," he said, "and we are now partners with the management team."

Marketing pundit and author
Mr. Zyman has been one of marketing's most flamboyant and highly compensated pundits and authors since his days as CMO at Coca-Cola in the 1990s. There, his take-no-prisoners style earned him the nickname "The Aya-Cola" among some ad-agency executives.

Mr. Zyman is legendary as the marketer behind the 1985 introduction of New Coke.
Mr. Zyman is legendary as the marketer behind the 1985 introduction of New Coke.
While he's had many marketing successes, Mr. Zyman is also legendary as the marketer behind the 1985 introduction of New Coke, which was ultimately discontinued after a consumer backlash and the return of Coca-Cola Classic.

In April 2005, MDC paid $52.4 million in cash and stock then worth another $11 million for a 61.6% stake in Zyman Group. A management group headed by Mr. Zyman retained the rest of the firm. It had $65 million in revenue and 129 employees in 2004, the year before the sale.

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Rupal Parekh contributed to this report.
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