MDC Partners is both consolidating and expanding operations in Atlanta, launching an office of New York-based Kirshenbaum Bond Senecal + Partners in the market and merging two of its existing Atlanta shops — Fletcher Martin and TrendCore — into that operation.
The office will house two distinct entities — Media Kitchen Atlanta (for buying and planning) and Trend Influence (providing strategy and creative services) — staffed by the former employees of Fletcher Martin and TrendCore. All told, the office launches with 50 staffers. A rep said no jobs are expected to be lost owing to the move.
Atlanta clients include Arby’s, Avery Denison, Coca-Cola, Church’s Chicken (currently in play with the incumbent defending), Kiz Toys, Levi Strauss, Navistar and TreeZero.
Fletcher Martin exec Jill Meiser (shown above) becomes president of the KBS+P Atlanta outpost, reporting to Barry Lowenthal, president of New York-based Media Kitchen.
Rich Leslie of TrandCore becomes Trend Influence’s president, brand innovation.
The move, per Lori Senecal, agency CEO, helps build the KBS+P brand outside its New York base and adds some marquee brands to the client roster.
In a broader sense, the evolution of KBS+P under Senecal (who joined last August) continues, following the shop’s recent appointments of digital and strategy chiefs and the departure of co-founder Jon Bond.
Of course, it’s tough to tell if the Kirshenbaum or Media Kitchen brands (fairly well-known in New York circles) can gain traction elsewhere.
Chris Colbert, CEO of Boston marketing firm Holland-Mark and a longtime industry watcher and former consultant, said these sorts of strategic moves can help shops reduce overhead, which is “always a good thing” in terms of selling services. Still, he cautioned: “Mushing agencies together is never easy, and it will create a huge distraction from the fundamental tasks of delighting current clients and attracting new ones.”