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Opening in Nashville

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The Tombras Group and Nashville veterans Gill Duff, Sharon Harms and Steve Quarles have formed DH&Q/Tombras Advertising.

Tombras in Knoxville is Tennessee's oldest ad-vertising agency

The new Nash-ville, Tenn., shop, Duff said, is positioned to target the city's rapidly ex-panding sports, healthcare and entertainment segments, plus the under-serviced mid-South territory extending west to Memphis, Tenn., and south to Atlanta.

"We saw an opportunity for an agency with super creative and strategic skills," Duff said. "In Knoxville, [Tombras Group CEO] Charlie Tombras saw the chance to expand his footprint into an important market. So we joined forces."

Tombras holds an undisclosed equity stake in the new venture.

Duff serves as CEO and Harms, an art director who has worked at agencies in Cleveland and Miami, is chief creative officer. Quarles, former general manager of The Buntin Group in Nashville, is chief operat-ing officer and director of account management.

In addition to an influx of operating capital, Tombras, which has been in business 50 years, will provide media planning expertise and administrative support.

"With Tombras' backing, we can bring our combined resources to bear better than any startup," Duff told Adweek.

To date, DH&Q/Tombras Advertising has signed a handful of local clients: IASIS Health Care, a hospital management firm; Jim Reed Chevrolet; Naxos of America, a classical music distributor; and IXT Solutions, a b-to-b billing service.