Ex-Clients Reunite With McCann

Nick Utton and Gene Lockhart, formerly of MasterCard and AT&T, respectively, are back working with McCann-Erickson.

The two executives have hired the agency to handle The New Power Co.’s $50 million-plus account. The shop will handle creative and media du ties for the Purchase, N.Y.-based energy-services provider, which wants to expand in states poised for energy deregula tion, said Utton, New Power’s managing di rector and chief marketing of ficer.

He said McCann won the business without a re view, but three undisclosed shops were ini tially con tac ted. GSD&M, Austin, Texas, is the incumbent of the 1-year-old company.

“Deregulation is alive and well,” Utton said of the $150 billion-a-year energy industry. “We want to be a national brand. If a consumer moves from New Jersey to Texas, we’d like them to move with New Power.”

Utton said McCann was hired to take the “brand and creative strategy to the next level.” He worked with the New York-based agency for four years while in MasterCard’s marketing department. New Power CEO Gene Lockhart was also a client during his years at former cli ent AT&T, when McCann held that account.

The agency team that pitched the business included Eric Keshin, gm, COO, Rich O’Leary, evp, director of account management, Joyce King-Thomas, evp, deputy creative director, and Jonathan Cranin, evp, chief creative officer for North America, Europe, Middle East and Africa.

The first TV and print work is slated to break early second quarter.

As of third quarter 2000, New Power had 316,000 customers in nine states that include New Jersey, Texas, Pennsylvania and Ohio.