Coming off a year of double-digit revenue growth, the New York office of Droga5 is ramping up its new business efforts with an account leader taking charge.
Mike Densmore, a group account director on Kraft Foods, has assumed the role of head of business development. He succeeds Olivia Legere—who’s shifting to group account director. In his new role, he reports to CEO Andrew Essex.
Densmore, 42, has agency and marketer-side experience, having worked as chief marketing officer at Integrated Beverage Group before joining Droga5 in October 2010. Earlier in his career, he worked at Arnold, JWT and Modernista!, where he was a partner and director of account service and new business.
Densmore knows his way around business development. He contributed to two successful Droga5 pitches last year: Amstel Light and a new product assignment from Kraft. Those turned out to be a trial run for his new role.
The new product launch was one of two that the shop added from Kraft last year; the other was MilkBite granola bars. Other wins included Hennessy, Coda Automotive, Vestas’ WindMade and Puma’s soccer business. Revenue from a late-2010 win, Prudential, also kicked in. All told, U.S. revenue grew 38 percent to an estimated $29 million.
The growth spurt and current new business opportunities underscore the need for seasoned leadership in business development. And Essex believes he has found that in Densmore, an account guy with a hybrid background who’s comfortable taking on new roles.
"He has a tremendous amount of experience from a variety of different perspectives," Essex said. "He also wants to be part of the team that's helping us move toward where the puck is going," which Essex further described as "staying ahead of the curve."