Breaking: Layoffs at GS&P

By Erik Oster 

Late yesterday and this morning, we received multiple tips regarding layoffs at both the San Francisco and New York offices of Goodby Silverstein & Partners. Details are scant at this point, although it appears from a leaked internal memo from Jeff Goodby in the most recent tip that the layoffs largely resulted from Comcast’s failed merger attempt with Time Warner Cable. Although there are no concrete details, one tipster claimed the layoffs affected as much as one third of the agency’s staff in the New York and San Francisco offices. We will update with further details when they become available. The internal memo is provided below:

From Jeff Goodby
Time Warner and our staffing

Several months ago, our Comcast client told us to prepare for the possibility that they would be merging with Time Warner, Inc.   This merger would have created the largest Internet and entertainment provider in the country.

Our revenues on Comcast would have increased very significantly.

Comcast wanted work to explain this merger.  They wanted a new campaign for Time Warner that would feature newly added Comcast products like X-1.  Talented people were assigned to begin this work.  People were hired, to be ready to go forward when everything was announced.  It was a big commitment.

As we now know, the merger was called off at the last minute.  Comcast is perhaps even more upset about this than we are.


This occurrence will affect both our San Francisco and New York offices.  To live within our means – which creates stability and assurance for everyone in our company – our staffs will have to now be smaller.  It won’t simply be a matter of cutting people who touched Time Warner specifically.  The company has changed since all this began.  People have come and gone.  Assignments have changed.

We have to create the best possible configuration of us all to go into the future, with the work before us.

We sympathize deeply in advance to all of you affected.  At the same time, however, we look forward to what happens next.

The work of our company is getting better every day.  It is certainly better than it has been in perhaps five years.

Our New York office, which will now be smaller, is an amazing beacon of freshness and light.  Their wins of The New York Post and StreetEasy, and the Emily’s Oz project for Comcast are all widely celebrated pieces of work.  We’re sure the office will leap forward.

San Francisco has seen a big surge as well under the creative lead of Margaret Johnson and Eric Kallman.  Everyone has to feel it in work like Adobe, Foster Farms, Sonic, Frito-Lay, and yes, Comcast.

There is fun to be had in the next few months. We are sorry about this dustup and hope you appreciate the transparency we show in situations like this.  We have always thought the truth helps squelch rumor-mongering.

We will send more information as things get more clear.

Thanks for your patience.