Reclaiming Independence: How 2 Shops Bought Themselves Back From IPG and Found Success

Dailey and TM Advertising ended decades with Interpublic Group

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Typically speaking, agency founders strive for the big payday that comes with a major holding company acquisition. But this year saw two shops aim to do the exact opposite, namely regain their independence by ending decades-long relationships with Interpublic Group.

Dailey Advertising, which IPG had owned for more than 30 years, completed a buyback last February after the holding group approached the agency with an offer following a series of strategic discussions.

“[It was] a mutual decision, done in a thoughtful way,” said managing partner Jean Grabow, adding that Dailey “wanted to nurture the culture we already have as a strong branding agency.”

The Los Angeles-based agency formed a new leadership structure around Grabow and fellow managing partners Michelle Wong, Steve Mitchell, Brad Johnson and Bill Waldner, with former CEO Tom Lehr opting not to participate.



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This story first appeared in the Nov. 13, 2017, issue of Adweek magazine. Click here to subscribe.