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After a year in which it has picked up almost $100 million in new accounts, Goldberg Moser O'Neill has landed its first major national consumer brand with new Citra, a $40 million Coca-Cola Co. assignment.

The win comes after the shop significantly rearranged its creative department and restructured several elements of its management team.


Mike Moser, an art director by trade who shared creative duties with partner Brian O'Neill, has relinquished administrative duties to work in a new role the company is dubbing "creative strategist."

Under the setup, Mr. Moser will tackle some of the agency's tougher creative projects and will serve as a link between the agency's planners and creatives.

"Mike enjoys getting to the heart of the matter," said Mr. O'Neill, exec VP-creative director, who heads up Dreyer's Grand Ice Cream and other accounts and has taken over administration of the shop's creative functions.

At the same time, Goldberg has hired a number of senior creative teams, among them Associate Creative Directors Jim Noble and Tom Roth.

After stumbling with the 1995 appointment of Bob Grossman as exec VP-general manager, agency Chairman Fred Goldberg reordered the ranks by bringing in Bob Johnson, the former Dreyer's VP-marketing who had spent his career on the client side of the business. He was named exec VP-client service director.


Pat Sherwood, who worked on the Levi Strauss & Co. business at Foote, Cone & Belding, San Francisco, and helped launch General Motors Corp.'s Saturn at Hal Riney & Partners, returned to Goldberg as exec VP-new business development, after a stint at EvansGroup, Seattle.

During an earlier stint at Goldberg, Mr. Sherwood was instrumental in winning the Kia Motors America account and served as account director.

Among the almost $100 million in accounts won last year were Aerial Communications, formerly American Portable Telecom; Rollerblade; Lexmark International; Infoseek; and Optiva Sonicare. In addition, Goldberg became one of three agencies working for Boston Market and sole agency for Einstein Bros. Bagels.

The agency's stable of long-term clients includes Dell Computer Corp., Dreyer's and Kia.


Goldberg was founded in 1990 when Chiat/Day wanted to close its San Francisco office and Mr. Goldberg hastily put together a management buyout. Last May, Goldberg sold a more than 40% minority stake to Interpublic Group of Cos.' Lowe Group. London-based Lowe will purchase more of the agency in three to four years.

Besides the principals, fewer than 20 other long-term employees-including Mike Massaro, chief operating officer, and Camille Johnson, senior VP-media director-hold equity in the agency.

The shop reported overall billings of $275 million for 1996, but Mr. Goldberg expects the account addition, along with growth from Kia's Northeast rollout, will bring the agency to $400 million-plus by the end of 1997.

Mr. Goldberg, who helped engineer the Teddy Ruxpin toy bear phenomenon in the mid-1980s, is known for his outspokenness in San Francisco ad circles, where self-effacing modesty in the Hal Riney tradition prevails.

His blustery New York management style, however, has lent his shop a reputation for personnel turnover. Although a number of top executives have been aboard for more than a dozen years, junior account execs are reputed to have a job expectancy of 15 months.

Even when he's pleased with the work, employees find it difficult to tell. Mr. Goldberg is said to have once stopped by the cubicle of a new employee, apparently to praise him for a job well done.

"How's your ass?" Mr. Goldberg asked.

"I'm sitting on it," the employee responded.

"That's good," said Mr. Goldberg as he left.

Still, at the heart of the shop is Mr. Goldberg and his new-business machine, which regularly spews out account wins.


"It's the best-managed agency around here," said Wayne Buder, senior VP-managing director, Foote, Cone & Belding's Technology Group, and formerly with Goldberg. Mr. Goldberg was as "much a father as a boss," he added.

Clients also like the balance between creative and Mr. Goldberg's account management style.

"Fred is only a phone call away," said Tyler Johnston, VP-marketing, Dreyer's Grand Ice Cream, who has found the addition of Lowe's worldwide resources "a potential plus" for his business, which has its sights set on Asia.

"Fred is, at his core, very entrepreneurial," he said. "For a client consumed with growth, he understands what you are going through."

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