Inside U.S. Media Agency of the Year Initiative's Remarkable 2018 Turnaround

The agency went from ‘basket case’ to ‘IHOb’ glory

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In 2016, Initiative was on the ropes, and global CEO Mat Baxter knew it.

“It was a basket case,” he admits, with “a dysfunctional culture, not much of a product, if any, in terms of a defined product or a proposition, no real brand or reputation to speak of” and a “relatively dry new-business pipeline” that didn’t include “any prestigious new-business pitches.”

The future did not look very bright. “That’s a challenge, to get back up on your feet,” he notes.

And yet, Initiative did just that.




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This story first appeared in the Feb. 25, 2019, issue of Adweek magazine. Click here to subscribe.