KSV Establishes Boston Outpost

Kelliher Samets Volk’s absorption last week of ad shop Orsatti & Partners gives Burlington, Vt.-based KSV a Boston office and direct marketing capabilities as it strives to es tablish itself as a more significant regional player.

“Our goal is to make the Boston office bigger than the Bur lington office,” said Yoram Sam ets, managing director of KSV, which employs about 50 staffers.

KSV executives declined to disclose terms of the acquisition.

O&P had struggled over the past year. Lou Orsatti, former O&P president, heads up the new KSV office as managing director; Dan Ed wards, who had also been with O&P, serves as senior brand manager. The pair are currently working out of O&P’s downtown office space with a small support staff.

“Having Lou [Orsatti] at the table brings us much greater credibility,” said Samets, who will spend some time each week at the Boston office.

Among the first tasks for KSV, Boston, is to create a direct marketing program for recently won Chittenden Bank, Burlington.

Regional expansion by an established agency such as KSV is a sound strategy, particularly since the shop picks up veteran talent and capabilities, said industry consultant Bill Montbleau. “That’s the only kind of entry into the marketplace that would make sense,” he said.

Orsatti has been a recognizable name in the Boston ad community for more than a decade. He was a founding partner of direct marketing shop Or satti & Parrish, which was purchased by Bos ton’s Ar nold in 1992. Or satti left the Arnold fold to form O&P two years later. That venture crested at $30-35 million in billings in 2000 before slumping badly during the high-tech downturn.

“Orsatti & Partners was very focused on dot-com clients—we hit a bad patch at the same time KSV wanted to ex pand,” said Or satti. “We were look ing to align ourselves with a larger organization [and] didn’t see a great future in what we had been doing.”

Prior to joining O&P last year as a brand manager, Edwards was based in Shanghai, where he worked with global shops including D’Arcy, Lowe Lintas and Bozell.