Meads, Durket Buy Campbell Mithun From IPG

LOS ANGELES The managing partners of Campbell Mithun’s San Diego office have reached an agreement to acquire the shop from the Interpublic Group, the agency said today.

Effective Feb. 1, the newly independent shop will be known as MeadsDurket and will be led by president and CEO Gary Meads and chief creative officer Tony Durket. Terms of the deal, which has been in the works for the last six months, were not disclosed.

Meads and Durket joined Campbell Mithun San Diego’s predecessor shop, Phillips-Ramsey, in 1993, following the merger of their former agency, Knoth & Meads. At that time, Phillips-Ramsey was a wholly owned office of IPG’s McCann-Erickson. In 2001, Phillips-Ramsey affiliated with another IPG shop, Minneapolis-based Campbell Mithun.

MeadsDurket will have 30 employees, said Meads. It will remain in its current space in Mission Valley, and continue to work with clients including Union Bank of California, San Diego Zoo, Del Mar Thoroughbred Club, Hitachi (the shop handles media buying and planning for the client’s U.S. global branding campaign), Hoehn Motors and Morris National Candies. Billings for the agency could not immediately be determined.

According to Meads, the duo decided to purchase the shop because the locally driven client market in San Diego is more conducive to an independent agency. “This is an opportunity to avoid conflicts within the system,” said Meads, adding that running an independent agency “seems to fit our style.”

Campbell Mithun will continue to have a presence on the West Coast through its other Southern California outpost, which is located in Irvine.