Eric Kallman and Steve Erich Opened a New Agency in San Francisco

By Patrick Coffee Comment

Eric Kallman–veteran of Wieden + Kennedy, GS&P, TBWA and BFG–has teamed up with former CP+B president Steve Erich to launch an agency called Erich & Kallman.

The agency will be based in San Francisco (duh) and operates on the three-pronged Famous, Fast, and Lean approach. From its LinkedIn page:

“The work we’ve done our entire careers has solved problems and grown business, but more than that it’s made people talk about brands when they weren’t talking about them before. The most economical and effective way to solve problems and grow business is to make work that people remember, talk about and share.”

The two met while Erich was serving as president of CP+B. According to the press release, Crispin “had been courting Mr. Kallman to join” before he picked San Francisco over Boulder, and the new partners hit it off.

Erich, who had worked at The Martin Agency and TBWA before joining Crispin to lead the Burger King business, left CP+B last summer after more than 11 years ahead of that agency’s restructuring, which was led by Chuck Porter and Lori Senecal.

“We’re excited to get started,” Kallman writes us about the new project. “Steve spent a lot of time speaking with clients about what they like and don’t like about the way creative shops are structured and operate now. Our goal is to address those concerns while building something that we know can produce world-class work efficiently.”

Kallman also tells us that the Eric(h)s are the agency’s only full-time employees at the moment, writing, “Right now we’re utilizing a lot of freelance talent. The freelance market is so deep and diverse it’s allowing us to create work as strong as anything I’ve been a part of at much bigger agencies.”

Via its homepage, the new entity is marketing itself largely on the strength of Old Spice and other campaigns Kallman worked on while at W+K, which are preceded by the line “You might know us from our past work.” From the press release:

Kallman is recognized for creating highly lauded campaigns for marketers such as P&G, Mars, Little Caesars and Kayak. Among his most celebrated were Old Spice’s “The Man Your Man Could Smell Like,” Skittles’ “Touch” and “Beard,” and Ragu’s “Long Days of Childhood.”

We interviewed Kallman for Adweek last September after he left GS&P in what seemed like an oddly-timed departure. We write that because he had been promoted only four months before leaving and had been positioned as one of “the next generation of creative leaders” by none other than Rich Silverstein. None of the involved parties elaborated on the reasons for the split, with Kallman saying he planned to keep working at GS&P as a freelancer and Jeff Goodby saying it had all happened “very amicably.”

Erich & Kallman is not yet ready to reveal its client list, though Kallman did tell us that the two are “working on projects for large marketers and start ups” and that they are currently in the final stages of pitching a national restaurant chain.

We do hear some things about a Red Robin

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