NEW YORK (AdAge.com) -- McCann WorldGroup Chief Growth Officer Matt Weiss is leaving his post at the embattled New York headquarters after 17 years to join his former colleague, Lori Senecal, in leading crosstown shop Kirshenbaum Bond Senecal & Partners.
Ms. Senecal left McCann Erickson, part of Interpublic Group of Cos., last August to serve as president-CEO of MDC Partners-owned agency (a deal which got her name on the door). At McCann she was succeeded by Verizon account leader Thom Gruhler. That account is now in turmoil, with the departure of a massive chunk of business this week to McGarryBowen that is expected to lead to staff cuts, but Mr. Weiss said his leaving is "completely unrelated" to the account shift.
"I've been in dialogue with KBS&P and [MDC Partners CEO] Miles Nadal for several months," Mr. Weiss told AdAge. "My reasons for leaving have to do with new opportunities and I wish McCann the best of luck having served it for the past 17 years."
Mr. Weiss -- who at Kirshenbaum Bond will serve in the newly created position of chief of staff -- worked with McCann's multinational clients such as Johnson & Johnson, Unilever, Coca-Cola and Mastercard in roles of increasing responsibility, most recently as chief growth officer. He worked on new business development and oversaw client business, such as running the Nasdaq and Holiday Inn global accounts.
Ms. Senecal in a statement said her shop is "thrilled that Matt, a unique thought leader in the industry, is joining our leadership team." She noted that one of his first tasks will be leading a new agency initiative focused on developing higher return on clients' marketing investments in a shorter period of time.
In recent months, Kirshenbaum Bond has been on a poaching spree of sorts. It has picked up top talent from shops such as Deutsch and Razorfish to serve in other C-level roles as it attempts to reinvigorate the once-hot New York offering and grow the agency network nationally.
A McCann spokeswoman said "we wish him well."