BOSTON PALM Arnold, an 80-person agency with offices in Montreal and Toronto, has rebranded as PALM + Havas.
The move comes on the heels of a broader agency realignment by Paris-based Havas, which just moved its creative holdings under the purview of David Jones, CEO of Euro RSCG, in a silo called Havas Worldwide. That group includes Arnold, based here, as well as all direct, design and marketing shops owned by Havas. Media agencies, including the global MPG network, remain organized under Havas Media.
Some sources said that bodes poorly for Arnold's long-term autonomy, but a representative for Euro RSCG today begged to differ. He emphasized that the shift in Canada "is actually completely separate from Arnold, so it has no effect on Arnold at all. PALM was aligned with Arnold at one point, hence the PALM Arnold name."
He added, "They made the decision to change the name," indicating that the move was not dictated by Havas or Euro RSCG.
Newly appointed CEO Ann Bouthillier (shown above), who moves up from vp, brand strategies and integration, leads the shop. She takes over from Pierre Mercier, who remains on the agency's board, but is no longer involved in day-to-day operations.
The agency has been in the marketplace for a quarter-century, currently handling Volkswagen of Canada (interactive and CRM) and Via Rail, among others.