Cole Henderson Drake Acquires Atlanta Agency

Aims to Speed Growth by Bringing Hughes Advertising Into Fold
ATLANTA–Cole Henderson Drake, frustrated by slow growth, last week announced it had acquired Hughes Advertising. Both shops are headquartered in Atlanta.
The newly formed entity is estimating annual revenues of $4 million.
“We’re too good to stay the size we’re at,” said CHD chairman John Drake. “As such, one of the imperatives for us is to grow, but at the same time we want to strengthen our work. We don’t see the two [goals] as an oxymoron.”
The key addition for Drake is the ability to install Hughes Advertising founder Dorothy Hughes as president of Cole Henderson Drake.
“Dorothy has always been a fierce champion of creative,” said Drake. “She brings a lot to our agency.”
As for Hughes, the deal frees her from the day-to-day grind of running an agency. In her new role, she will handle new business, as well as search for a creative director, something both shops were lacking as they came together.
She joins Drake, and two CHD veterans, promotional marketer Asa Johnson and brand planner Mike Tyre, on the agency’s management team.
“I’m thrilled to be getting back to new business and working with the creative department,” Hughes said. “Those are the parts of business I love. It feels a little odd after 10 years not to call the shots, but I’m coming to a place with great resources.”
Cole Henderson Drake and Hughes Advertising had no client conflicts entering the merger.
Founded in 1969, Cole Henderson Drake has been a staple of the Atlanta advertising community. Its client list includes Best Western, Snapper, Cox Communications, Wendy’s and Grand Bay Resorts.
“This acquisition makes sense from every angle,” Drake said. Dorothy’s abilities and experience ably fill a management need of ours.”
“Over the years I have always respected Cole Henderson Drake’s work,” Hughes said. “I will be working with some very bright people.”