Goodby Secures HP/Compaq Branding Duties

Hewlett-Pack ard’s decision last week to retain Goodby, Silverstein & Partners as its overall branding agency keeps the San Francisco shop surging, and even more staffers could soon join its ranks.

Good by was named lead agency for HP’s worldwide brand ing. Pub licis Groupe, including Publicis & Hal Riney in San Francisco, was tapped as global agency for products, according to the client.

“They are absolutely going to have to hire more people, with Saturn and Ace [Hardware] and now this additional spending by a consolidated HP,” one source said of Goodby, referring to two other major accounts it has snagged in recent months. “They will use this development to get their grip on some of the best talent in the world.”

Goodby added roughly 60 people after the $300 million Saturn win in February.

Following its merger with Compaq, HP expects to spend roughly $250 million on domestic advertising, according to the client. Palo Alto, Calif.-based HP spent about $140 million in 2001, per CMR; Compaq spent approximately $135 million.

The companies had used several shops for branding and advertising.

The moves mean the agencies retain their pre-merger roles. Publicis’ Optimedia will handle media. Publicis’ various divisions and shops will design ads primarily for products such as printers and servers. Goodby will handle brand advertising.

Foote, Cone & Belding, which worked with Compaq before the merger, will handle interactive chores worth roughly $75 million through New York, the agency said.

Meanwhile, Optimedia hopes to parlay the attention from the HP win into other new-business reviews. “When you’re being compared to huge operations like Interpublic’s Magna and competing and winning against Initiative Media, I think it’s a testament to the resources and capabilities that Optimedia has and that clients are giving us a closer look,” said Mike Drexler, Optimedia’s CEO.

Initiative handled Compaq’s media buying and will still work for the client in some European markets, an HP representative said.