Agency Brief: Kombucha and bye, bye for now
I regret to inform you there's nothing brief about this Agency Brief.
But I have a reason, dear agency readers. This will be my last edition of this column, which has become an equal parts joyful and dreaded part of my Friday routine.
I've loved hearing (and telling) your stories—and getting to be a part of such an institution of this industry. Thanks for stomaching my awful puns and sending fun tips that reminded people why they decided to work in advertising.
Stay tuned here in the coming weeks for what's next for Agency Brief, and please don't be a stranger!
Havas top creative
Late last year, the day after Ad Age wrote a story about a polarizing internal culture at Havas Chicago, Havas North America chief creative officer Jason Peterson departed the agency "on mutual agreement." Peterson has since started an agency called The Times. This week, John Norman took over as chief creative officer for Havas Chicago. Norman was formerly chief creative officer and partner at Translation, where he worked for nearly five years.
Norman said in a statement that his goal "is to build upon Havas Chicago's heritage as an unconventional agency—from the art on the walls to the people to what we do—and use the power of hybrid storytelling to create ideas with simple human truths, told with provocative single-minded narratives across all media channels."
What would Bernbach think?
DDB Worldwide pulled back the curtain on its new "visual identity" Friday—with a big B made of two D's and its founders names: Ned Doyle, Mac Dane and Bill Bernbach. Barry Quinn, DDB North America's chief design officer, says the new identity "purposely retains a strong link to our visual history. It's much more than a symbol, it's a canvas for the creativity of the network. We can't wait to see how that evolves over time."
At DDB, Two Ds Make a "B" -- There's a playfulness to this look that I enjoy. The coloring and the huge "B" are not exactly childlike, but there is something youthful and energetic about it. https://t.co/yDZBcoxFli— David Burn (@davidburn) March 22, 2019
The only star I want to see at a business summit
An Omnicom Media Group Partner Summit this week featured "pitbulls, politicos and premium content" — with guest appearances by a pitbull named Chase and Chris Christie. Chase appeared at the summit with The Dodo, while Christie spoke on a panel on the state of live TV. The event was meant to rethink the standard upfront/newfront. Plus: puppies!
FCB New York and client FDA want smoking to be scary. So the duo, along with Interpublic Group of Cos. media agency Initiative, brings the "dangers of cigarette addiction to life in a horrifying new video game" that's available on Xbox — as part of their "The Real Cost" campaign. The game, "One Leaves," is meant to reference the fact that out of every four teens that smoke in high school, three will smoke "well into adulthood." FCB New York also tapped director Darren Aronofsky to create a trailer and digital content to promote the game.
Indie agency Gut has a new address in São Paulo — the new location is the agency's third after opening in Miami and Buenos Aires. The new office is led by managing director Valeria Barone and executive creative director Bruno Brux. "I was born and raised in Brazil. I've always wanted to have an independent agency in my country. Now it's finally happening. We want Gut São Paulo to be the most creative and gutsy agency of Brazil," Anselmo Ramos said in an emailed statement.
New biz brief
Regions Financial, a bank with more than 1,500 retail locations, has named GroupM's m/Six as its media agency of record. Regions previously worked with Harmelin Media and Sapient Razorfish.
Friendly's Restaurants has a new agency roster as it tries to "reinvigorate the beloved community-oriented brand as consumer dynamics and the restaurant marketplace continue to evolve." The marketer will now work with ad agency The Fantastical, digital and creative agency Hyfn and LAK Public Relations. Friendly's will still work with incumbent media buying shop Cam Media.
Humm Kombucha named Portland, Oregon-based indie North as their agency-of-record. North will handle brand strategy, creative strategy and paid media. The brand has been trying to raise awareness of its "approachable flavors like strawberry lemonade and blueberry mint."
On the move…
Dentsu Aegis Network has hired Jacki Kelley, former deputy chief operating officer of Bloomberg LP, as its president and chief client officer in the U.S.
Mike Densmore has been elevated from president to CEO of Forsman & Bodenfors New York. The agency hasn't had a New York CEO in recent years, and Guy Hayward remains global CEO.
Gareth Collins has been named CEO of McGarryBowen U.K. Collins was previously the U.K. CEO overseeing Publicis Groupe agencies Leo Burnett and Fallon. He replaces Jason Gonsalves, who is now brand director at The Face.
iCrossing has hired Sujal Patel (former senior VP at Digitas) as its chief technology officer and Kyle Lee (former senior VP of performance media at IPG's Reprise Media) as VP and head of search. Recently, the agency also upped Heather Slezak to head of talent.
WPP brand consultancy Landor has hired Gabriel Miller as president of the Americas. He most recently served as executive partner and NYC studio leader at IBM iX.
Lucky Generals has promoted Nik Upton to group chief operating officer and Tom Howes to U.K. chief operating officer. Upton previously served as chief operating officer at Lucky Generals U.K. and Dark Horses, while Howes was a client partner, running pieces of business including Amazon.
Havas Media has hired Thomas Minc as managing director of global strategy and Ellen Zaleski as managing director of global insights. Minc previously worked at Havas before departing in 2016 to become managing director of Sopexa USA, a marketing agency. Zaleski joins from Nike, where she was director of consumer knowledge.
IPG Mediabrands' Reprise has promoted Michael O'Brien from executive creative director to seniro VP and head of creative.
Mother New York has hired Gordon Hull as its creative director focused on the agency's Target business. Hull was previously a consultant for brands including The North Face and Tory Burch.
Jason Parks has been promoted to chief growth officer of Kansas City-based agency Barkley. Parks was formerly exec VP and managing director at the agency.