Dentsu to Absorb Attik After Scion Loss

By Patrick Coffee 

Droga5 surprised many in the ad world last month by winning creative duties for two new Toyota Scion models set to launch in the Fall.

At the time, a client spokesperson told us that Scion’s AOR Attik would “[continue] to be a part of our creative team,” that the Dentsu-owned agency would “support various marketing initiatives” in the future, and that Droga5 was simply “a new partner.”

Those statements do not appear to have been completely accurate.

After losing its largest and longest-held account, the agency will fold into the larger Dentsu operation this Summer. The move will affect both of Attik’s offices in Los Angeles and San Francisco, so the agency will essentially cease to exist–as we know it, at least.

The statement from Dentsu Aegis:

“After evaluating the Attik business with an eye towards future growth and sustainability, we have decided to bring Attik into Dentsu Aegis Network. The result will be a reorganization of the business with a long-term view towards client needs and opportunities that will most effectively leverage Attik’s talent, expertise and capabilities on a broader scale. We are actively working to ensure a smooth transition and to redeploy people within Dentsu Aegis Network.”

Not everyone will be redeployed: sources tell us that Toyota cancelled the last few projects scheduled with Attik after signing Droga, that agency principals told employees at an all hands meeting last week that its offices will be closing in July, and that an unspecified number of layoffs followed the loss.

The most recent staffing news regarding Attik concerned the February 2014 departure of Chairman/CEO Ric Peralta, who now lists himself as an “investor, advisor, and consultant” to businesses in the Bay Area.

We have not yet determined whether Attik Los Angeles and San Francisco will close entirely or become Dentsu Aegis locations. The parent company first “hand[ed] sister shop Attik the keys to its LA office” in 2012 before announcing that it had begun the tenth year of its creative partnership with Scion.

We reached out to Dentsu for further clarification on those issues; updates when we get them.