Chicago-based international agency Leo Burnett will close its New York office after approximately four years.
The office, which opened in February 2011 with a staff of 15 full-time employees, earned an extensive profile by Rupal Parekh of AdAge and coverage from Stuart Elliott of The New York Times; Elliott noted the crowdsourced “New York writes itself” campaign that served as Leo Burnett’s formal introduction to our city.
Here’s the official statement:
“Leo Burnett has decided to close Leo Burnett New York to focus on growth opportunities with Rokkan, Leo Burnett Business, Leo Burnett Chicago and the broader global network.
Leo Burnett New York created some of the most awarded, unconventional and talked-about work in the industry during its five years on Park Avenue. The company is very proud and thankful for the creativity and innovation that Leo Burnett New York put out into the world.”
The closing follows the April 2014 departure of Jay Benjamin, chief creative who led the New York team and now serves as EVP/CCO at Saatchi & Saatchi New York. During his time in the CCO position, Leo Burnett won Chobani and produced work for Bacardi, Samsung, and Harris Tweed (among others).
Other top executives left after Benjamin: EVP/ECD Michael Canning accepted the GCD role at 72andSunny in July, and Managing Director Tom Flanagan, who helped launch the New York location and led the agency’s entertainment efforts, departed in January.
In his 2011 article, Elliott noted that Burnett “has had service offices in New York, but never a full-fledged operation.”