Arnold MPG Ups Exec

BOSTON — Steve Moynihan has been named managing director of Arnold MPG. He succeeds John Gaffney, who was elevated in May to chief operating officer of parent Media Planning Group USA, a unit of Havas.

Moynihan, 35, takes the reins of an estimated $1 billion media planning and buying operation that works for most domestic Arnold clients. He will report to Gaffney. Moynihan has been with the Boston-based company for two years, most recently as svp, group media director on Arnold’s largest account, the $350 million Volkswagen of America business. He will continue to run VW with vp, associate media director Jennifer Bartner-Indeck.

“Steve has an excellent sense of what marketing approaches clients need and how to support them with media,” said Gaffney.

Gaffney recruited Moynihan from the media department of Austin, Texas-based GSD&M, where he ran MasterCard. He praised Moynihan for making media an intrinsic part of campaign development and for applying creative thinking to help VW refine its media buys. In 2001, for example, Moynihan guided VW into magazines not normally associated with car advertising, such as Blender and Dwell, in an effort to reach upscale young consumers.

Representing roughly one third of MPG’s $3 billion in domestic billings, Arnold MPG also handles accounts such as Royal Caribbean, and Choice Hotels. Sibling shop Arnold McGrath, New York, operates a separate media division, though efforts are under way to integrate its operations into Arnold MPG, Moynihan said.