Octagon opens Korean office ahead of world cup

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SEOUL--Octagon Worldwide, the Interpublic Group of Cos.' sports marketing and entertainment group, has put down roots in Korea, giving the company itsfifth base in Asia and a prime location for managing soccer's World Cup 2002 for clients. Korea is co-hosting the event with Japan.

Octagon Marketing, a division of Octagon Worldwide, has set up an equity partnership with Korean sports marketer Ho Kim. An adviser to the U.S. Olympic Committee at the Seoul Games in 1988, Mr. Ho's positions since have included exec VP of U.S.-based marketing agency Lang & Partners and president of RedZone Marketing Co., a Korean sports marketing agency.

Already, Seoul-based Octagon Korea has been appointed by two of the World Cup 2002 host cities -- Jeju and Ulsan -- to help with marketing in the run-up to the competition.

"Korea will be an important market for us," says Octagon Marketing Worldwide President Alasdair Ritchie. "It has the fastest growing economy in Asia and houses some of the world's largest companies. The Koreans are also dedicated followers of two of Octagon's key sports: soccer and baseball. In addition, we believe we will be very well placed to work with our soccer clients who will be sponsoring the event."

Octagon Worldwide's other Asian offices are in Singapore, Hong Kong, Beijing and Shanghai.

Copyright September 2000, Crain Communications Inc.

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