EX-WELLS TOP CREATIVE OPENS UP SHOP: KAPLAN THALER PROMISES CREATIVITY FOR ADS AND BEYOND

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Linda Kaplan Thaler, former executive creative director of Wells BDDP, New York, has opened Kap-lan Thaler Group. The former top creative was one of three executives who ran the agency's operations; she resigned post in July.

Her new company will handle advertising but also will work in film and music production, entertainment, and various other creative projects, she said. "The widget we produce is creativity," said Ms. Kaplan Thaler. "We don't want to be boxed in by advertising formats."

PROJECTS WITH AGENCIES

She said the company will work with ad agencies on projects the shops can't do themselves, and added she has talked with other agencies about that possibility.

Besides Ms. Kaplan Thaler, the staff includes Robin Koval, former exec VP-account management at Gotham, as director of account services; and Gerry Killeen, former associate creative director of J. Walter Thompson USA, as director of creative services.

The Kaplan Thaler Group opens with $30 million in ad including creative for Bristol-Myers Squibb Co.'s Clairol Herbal Essences haircare brand, as well as accounts for the Westchester (N.Y.) Arts Council, movie-trailer producer Seismic Productions and board game marketer Gamewich.

Wells resigned Herbal Essences this summer after the brand expanded into body washes, causing a conflict with client Procter & Gamble Co.'s Oil of Olay body washes. Herbal Essences body washes went to Bozell Worldwide.

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