Gateway Taps Ford’s Simmons

BOSTON Gateway has hired Kristen Simmons for the newly created position of senior vice president, consumer marketing, the company said on Wednesday.

Simmons, 35, had been with Ford’s Mazda North America unit as vice president of marketing, and she is credited with helping to develop the brand’s well-known recent campaigns that revolve around the phrase “Zoom Zoom.”

In her new role Simmons “will be responsible for all of Gateway’s consumer marketing strategy, planning and execution,” Gateway said in a statement.

She will now report to T. Scott Edwards, executive vice president in charge of Gateway’s consumer operations. Simmons starts at Gateway in July.

Gateway spends about $150 million annually on ads. The company has said it is attempting to transform itself from a computer manufacturer into a provider of wide-ranging technology solutions. Its first TV commercial from the LB Works division of Publicis Groupe’s Leo Burnett, Chicago, broke in May and introduced the tagline “Comforts of Gateway” [Adweek Online, May 11]. Gateway named the shop in March following a review.