Carat North America, a $2 billion independent media agency network, has planted a stake in Dallas.
"It's our assault on Texas," said John Barnes, executive vice president and managing director of Carat/Los Angeles.
"It's a huge market and our feeling is that the best way to get business is to be there," Barnes added.
The entry into the Dallas market is part of a reorganization by Carat, which has been consolidating offices and reevaluating its geographic positioning during the previous year.
"We wanted to have a few [offices] and have them really big and really strong in major markets," Barnes said.
Dallas was selected to anchor the Southwest following the closure of an office in Denver.
John Galloway, who previously headed the Denver office, has become chief of Dallas operations with the title of vice president and account director.
"The one missing link [in the Carat network] seemed to be Texas," Galloway said. "They're in the forefront of the new economy in a lot of ways with telecommunications and other businesses."
The company opens its doors with an impressive group of clients. The roster includes Radio Shack, Adams Golf, FirstWorld, Dot Safe and Churchs Chicken. The firm claims it is now the largest media operation in the area.
About 10 staff members are in the Carat/Dallas office, handling media planning, buying and account service. The firm expects to have the location fully staffed with 20 employees by June.
Carat Group, a division of London-based Aegis Group, bills itself as the world's largest independent media service firm, with worldwide billings topping $10 billion.