Wyoming-based Taco John's loved its agency contact so much, it hired her away and gave her the title of CMO. After five years as VP of insights and media at Sioux Falls-based Lawrence &
Schiller, Billie Jo Waara has joined the Mexican-themed fast food restaurant to focus on growing the chain's awareness in the area. Of the hire, Taco John's CEO Jeff Linville said: "I hired Billie Jo
because of her proven results and impressive experience growing sales and transactions. I believe she will play a lead role in helping us achieve both our short and long term growth goals here at Taco
In the wake of the failed Publicis-Omnicom merger, the Mini Holding Company is rising to prominence. Yesterday we learned that Chicago-based private equity firm Lake Capital aims to acquire London-based Engine Group, parent to Deep Focus, Noise and several others. Today, Project Worldwide, the 30th largest holding company according to Ad Age's DataCenter, is acquiring LA-based Pitch which is known for its work on Burger King, Pepsi and Meineke. Of the decision to become part of Project Worldwide, Pitch Co-Founder Jon Banks said, "Life's too short to work with bad people, so when we looked at who we would want to partner with, cultural fit was definitely the threshold."
Like every other agency searching for new business models in order to stay afloat, Dallas-based ad agency Launch has, well, launched a business of its own. The agency has debuted HeadSpace, a co-working space for creative professionals. Of the launch, Launch Principal and HeadSpace Co-Founder Diane Seimetz Duncan said: "HeadSpace is unique in the Dallas marketplace, as it was designed by creative marketing professionals for creative marketing professionals. We want to be a community of ideas, innovation, networking and new opportunities for everyone -- including us."
In what will be a boon for some agencies and a disaster for others, P&G is divesting or shedding or merging half of its brands and will focus on its top 70-80 brands. Of the move, P&G Chairman and CEO A.G. Lafley said: "Today we are announcing an important strategic step forward that will significantly streamline and simplify the company's business and brand portfolio. We will become a much more focused, much more streamlined company of 70 to 80 brands." The 70-80 brands P&G plans to retain account for 90% of company sales and 95% of profit.
Oy! Another creative award event? Sadly, yes. This one's comes from The A-List Hollywood and they have announced the call for entries for the Moving Image
Advertising, Interactive & Branded Entertainment 2015 Award. The entry deadline set for January 30, 2015.
I'm told the A-List Hollywood is the first creative advertising competition of its kind in Hollywood and will focus on the intersection between advertising and entertainment across all platforms. The event will be judged by the usual collection of international creatives including Leo Burnett's Mark Tutsell, JWT's Matt Eastwood, 360i's Pierre Lipton, and DDB Germany's Eric Schoeffler, among others. And no, there's not one single woman on the jury.
Of the awards, The Martin Agency Chief Creative Director Joe Alexander said: "There are way too many award shows and way too many without a clear purpose. The A-List Hollywood is the rare exception. It rewards the brands -- and agencies -- that are behaving in the most creative and engaging ways. Now that's refreshing."
Right, Joe. That's vastly different from every single other award event on the planet.
There's been a lot going on with Nationwide and its relationship with its agencies over the past few months. While its relationship appears to be solid with McKinney, things are not going so well
regarding its relationship with Moxie.
Confirming this, a statement from Moxie CEO Suzy Deering reads: “While Moxie will continue to work with Nationwide, it will no longer be on a retainer basis. Given this shift, we’ve begun the process of closing our Columbus office. Accounts currently serviced out of that location will be handled by our Pittsburgh and Atlanta offices. We are very proud of the work our Columbus team has produced over the years. They are a group of truly talented, dedicated professionals, and we thank them for all they have done.”
It totally sucks when an office of an agency has to shut down due to client shifts or losses. It's not fun. I've been there and know firsthand what it's like. But life goes on. Mine did. And so will the lives of everyone involved here.