WPP Rebrands Its Ford-Dedicated Agency to Reflect Its Expanded Reach

Global Team Blue underscores international identity

WPP is rebranding its Ford-dedicated agency, Team Detroit, to better reflect the global evolution of its marketing resources. Global Team Blue is the new identity for Team Detroit, Blue Hive and Retail First which have been working on behalf of Ford for over nine years.

WPP first rolled out Team Detroit in 2007, combining client teams at JWT, Y&R, Wunderman, Ogilvy and Mindshare to form a single agency dedicated to Ford, one of WPP's biggest clients. In recent years, Blue Hive has been the agency name used to establish business operations outside the U.S., while Retail First was spun out to help drive traffic to Ford and Lincoln dealers. Global Team Blue also works with other WPP agency partners—including iconmobile, digital shop Rockfish and direct agency VML—as Team Detroit did.

"This is a way to simplify our offering and our branding to allow for a clearer positioning," said Global Team Blue chief content officer Toby Barlow. 

Barlow held the same job at Team Detroit, where he also served as global chief creative officer. Kim Brink,Team Detroit's global chief operating officer, assumes the COO role at Global Team Blue.

As a combined entity, Global Team Blue has an expanded global reach with 49 offices. Team Detroit had 15 offices. WPP, which helped pioneer the global team agency model, now has 48 of them with Ford being the largest. The agency has expanded beyond its beginnings as a Ford-only agency. Global Team Blue includes other marketers like Johnson Controls, Ohio Art and Purina on its client roster.