New Orleans Homecoming for Mayer

DALLAS Three months after Hurricane Katrina forced widespread evacuation of New Orleans, Louisiana’s largest ad shop has returned to the Crescent City, said Mark Mayer, president of Peter A. Mayer Advertising.

Since Aug. 29 when Katrina slammed ashore, the agency has operated at satellite offices, with most employees living in rental properties, the shop said.

“We have been eager to return to New Orleans and contribute to the recovery of our beloved city,” said Mayer. “For more than two months the agency has been operating out of several offices in Baton Rouge and Monroe. It’s great to be back under one roof.”

The agency’s headquarters facility at 324 Camp St. near the French Quarter was not flooded, but lack of services and housing prevented a return, Mayer said.

To announce the agency’s homecoming Friday, Mayer ran an ad in the New Orleans Times Picayune under the headline “Some Things Are Worth Fighting For.” Proclaiming that the city has been its home for 40 years and would be for 40 more, body copy read, “In life as in business, you have to fight for what you believe in.”

With much of its clientele in New Orleans, Mayer needs to see the city as a whole recover from the devastating effects of the flooding that followed Katrina. Convention and tourism business has taken a crippling blow, and many local restaurateurs are keeping their doors closed due to a lack of customers and employees.

Founded by Peter A. Mayer, father of Mark Mayer and executive creative director Josh Mayer, in 1967 with three employees and $200,000 in annual billings, the agency now reports a staff of 120 and billings of $70 million.