TJ Maxx splits from Holland Mark

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TJ Maxx, Framingham, Mass., on Dec. 31 will end its nearly 25-year relationship with Holland Mark Advertising, Boston. TJX Cos.' off-price unit in 1976 began working with Ingalls, Quinn & Johnson, which last year was acquired by Holland Mark Martin Edmunds. "It was a very long-term relationship," said George Sokolowski, TJX senior VP-corporate marketing. "We felt it was time to pursue a new approach for TJ Maxx. As we continue to grow, we want the best agency possible to handle our business objectives." TJX will launch a review for the $20 million broadcast business with the help of Pile & Co., Boston. The review also may include media planning and buying, currently handled by the Media Edge, New York, on behalf of Holland Mark.

"We have traditionally used one agency for both [creative and media], and are leaving that decision to the review process," Mr. Sokolowski said.The company's Marshalls unit, handled by Boston agency Hill, Holliday, isn't affected by the review.

The loss will create a revenue hit for Holland Mark, said agency CEO Bill Davis, but he doesn't expect it to affect profits. "The reality is a year ago we were an $8.5 million agency; now we're a $21 million agency," he said, noting the shop currently is reviewing its business to determine whether any of its 160 employees will be affected. "Assuming we don't replace [TJ Maxx], it would affect us next year," he added.

Copyright September 2000, Crain Communications Inc.

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