McKinney Buys Itself Back From Havas | Adweek McKinney Buys Itself Back From Havas | Adweek
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McKinney Buys Itself Back From Havas

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The shop has always been creatively focused and will continue to trade on that reputation while offering in-house media planning and buying duties across all media except broadcast TV, Brinegar said. Agencies such as Anomaly and Goodby, Silverstein & Partners  -- flexibly working across media channels new and old -- provide inspiration, if not a blueprint, for McKinney's future.

Industry observers generally applauded the buyback move if only because in recent years McKinney's Havas association had not been particularly beneficial for either party.

"It has the heritage of a creative boutique and its independence may now help it to re-energize that reputation," said Judy Neer, president of industry consultancy Pile and Co.

Chris Colbert, CEO of Boston-based Holland Mark and a longtime manger of midsize agencies, was likewise optimistic: "There is scant evidence that being publicly held or part of an agency holding company creates strategic incremental value to the agency or its clients. In fact, one could argue the opposite. It is a huge distraction and puts such a focus on satiating shareholders that 'doing what's right for the customer' can get lost in the shuffle."

He also injected a note of caution, however, because the agency's ultimate success will also "depend on what they bought it for, the debt they  took on, etc., -- i.e.,  Is it a good investment?"

Brinegar declined to disclose financial terms of the deal or discuss related details.

Along with Brinegar, who joined in 2002, the partners and board of directors are Jeff Jones, president; Andrew Delbridge, chief strategy officer; Joni Madison, chief operating officer; Jonathan Cude, chief creative officer; Tim Jones, chief financial officer; Jeremy Holden, director of account planning; Doug Holroyd, director of connection planning; John Newall, group account director and director of strategic alliances; Janet Northern, director of agency communications; Jim Russell, director of digital strategy; and Ellen Steinberg, group creative director.