Fuel Adds BottleRocket’s Ad Skills

ATLANTA Fuel, an independent design and branding shop in Greenville, S.C., said it has acquired BottleRocket, an ad agency in the same city.

BottleRocket was owned and operated by Brian Connaughton and his wife, Eli, both veterans of New York agencies who moved to Greenville to open the shop in 2003. The couple will join Fuel’s offices in downtown Greenville, and the BottleRocket name will be dropped.

Brian Connaughton is a former associate creative director at Publicis Groupe’s Saatchi & Saatchi in New York, where he worked on the Tylenol, Beck’s Beer, UBS and Wild Turkey accounts. Now, he is creative director at Fuel.

Eli Connaughton is a former senior art director at MDC Partners’ Kirshenbaum Bond & Partners in New York. Now, she is senior art director at Fuel.

Bill Donohue, president of Fuel, said the acquisition gives his shop, which was built on its design skills, advertising expertise. Donohue had worked as the shop’s creative director but now will operate as chief creative director.

“The decision to add to Fuel’s advertising component was primarily client driven,” Donohue said. “We were getting more and more strategic and advertising opportunities from our clients and the expansion will allow us to meet that demand.”

BottleRocket adds its Stillwood Properties and Pinnacle Bank clients to Fuel’s accounts that include Ridgid Tools, Ryobi Tools and Maxfli golf.

Terms of the acquisition were not disclosed.