Future Innovation: WPP Acquires Cheskin

Added Value, WPP's brand-development business, has acquired Cheskin, an innovation consulting firm. The renamed Cheskin Added Value brings a strong presence in the tech sector, design strategy expertise and a solid understanding of the U.S. Hispanic market to its parent company.

Darrel Rhea will continue as CEO of Cheskin Added Value. The firm has been promised a high degree of independence, and will continue to focus on consumer insights-based innovation consulting for product development, branding and marketing concerns.

Cheskin clients include Microsoft, Del Monte, Visa, eBay and Wal-Mart. The agency was established in 1946 and is based in Redwood Shores, Calif., with offices in New York and Seattle. It will collaborate with other Added Value offices worldwide.

"The new Cheskin Added Value will stimulate fresh ideas and perspectives that will grow our services into new markets," says Maggie Taylor, CEO of Added Value, North America.

Rhea says that joining Added Value kicks up the service level to the firm's global clients and "adds real power to our offering in emerging market countries like China."

Added Value's global network extends to 25 locations in 15 countries. The company offers brand development and marketing insight services to blue-chip companies across all industry sectors.

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