BK Closing in Texas

Bozell Kamstra is closing its Texas office at the end of the year largely due to the loss of its $40 million Air Force business.

The Irving, Texas, office of the Minneapolis-based agency lost its flagship account in November, after 14 years, following a review won by GSD&M, Austin, Texas.

Bozell Group representative Kathleen Ruane in New York confirmed the planned closing, adding that Bozell Kamstra plans to “concentrate on our office in Austin.”

In a related move, the 20-person SixtyFootSpider interactive agency that shared office space in Irving with Bozell will also close “in the near future,” said Ruane.

The agency “hopes to consolidate those clients into the SixtyFootSpider Minneapolis office,” Ruane said.

Bozell Kamstra and SixtyFootSpider are units of Chicago-based True North Communications, though the decision to close was made by Bozell without TN involvement, according to a TN representative.

SixtyFootSpider lost its Air Force business at the same time as Bozell Kamstra, and also was hit by the loss of its Subaru account. The current weakness of the dot-com industry made it difficult to attract new business and replace what was lost, according to insiders.

Thirty-seven people currently work at the Bozell office in Irving, which will likely be pared down to a skeleton staff to fulfill government contract obligations through the end of the year.

Tom O’Connor, a senior partner and former general manager of Bozell Kamstra in Irving, stepped down last month. David Dasenrock of the Austin office has been made acting general manager in his stead, Ruane said.