It was early fall when we last heard rumblings about who would replace McCann Worldgroup CEO John Dooner — an IPG subsidiary whispered that Nick Brien was at the top of the list. Today, the agency announced Dooner will stay on as Chairman as Brien transitions in.
As the Interpublic Group of Companies’ biggest player, McCann desperately needed a leader who would continue that tradition. In 2008, their $2.5 billion in earnings accounted for a third of the holding company’s revenue, according to the Wall Street Journal. AdAge reports this figure at 40%, but we’re told by an executive close to the matter that WSJ’s figure is more accurate.
Though the CEO announce is probably not high on your priority list, it’s worth noting if only because speculation as to who would replace Dooner has been high for so long. Brien’s most recent post was as CEO of Mediabrands, which oversees IPG’s many media entities in Universal McCann, Initiative and Magna Globa.
Click continued for details on SPLIT, McCann’s new creative technology unit.
In addition to the Brien news, it appears McCann was holding off on announcing the newest addition to their suite of business tools that the agency will license to clients. The model is not unlike that of the Barbarian Group.
An agency representative tells us the idea was to build a company that operates like a tech or IP company — creating products that can be licensed to clients. This is opposed to the old manner of giving products away, and McCann hopes the business will open new revenue streams.
But it’s not an analytics tool, we’re told, though there may be an announcement made at SXSW pertaining to a social media platform.