Focusing on the BBDO In BBDO Minneapolis

BBDO Minneapolis, dominated by its $40 million Hormel business, will try to make better use of its agency network to back new president Denny Haley’s goal of becoming a stronger player in the market.

“Maybe it’s a parochial point of view, [but] we’re going to create and build things out of this market,” Haley, 53, said last week. BBDO worldwide president and North America CEO Andrew Robertson “has a plan,” Haley said. “It will unfold.”

“The way I want to try and grow the agency is for Denny and his team to leverage all the resources of BBDO, not just in the U.S. but elsewhere,” Robertson said. “This should be the BBDO agency in Minneapolis, as opposed to an agency in Minneapolis that happens to be BBDO.”

One source said the shop may work more closely with BBDO Chicago. Long dominated by its Wrigley business, Chicago has expanded somewhat with Jim Beam.

BBDO has made attempts in the past to make the U.S. network more cohesive by fostering cooperation among offices. Those plans met with limited success.

Haley took over as president of Minneapolis last week from Bob Thacker, who retired to consult and teach. In Thacker’s four years, the agency won an anti-smoking effort for New Jersey and projects including holiday work for Target Corp.’s Marshall Field’s stores this year. But the loss of the $25 million Buffets, Inc. account to Doner was a blow, and Hormel cut spending from $60 million in 1999 to $45 million in 2002, per Nielsen Monitor-Plus. Layoffs are expected at the 50-person shop as a result of the Buffets loss, sources said.