MDC Acquires Majority Stake in Kirshenbaum

NEW YORK MDC Partners said it has acquired a 60 percent stake in Kirshenbaum Bond + Partners. The purchase price was not disclosed, but Toronto-based MDC said in a statement that a stock component is included.

Along with its core ad agency, Kirshenbaum’s operations, based here, also include Lime Public Relations + Promotions, buying and planning shop The Media Kitchen and Dotglu, an interactive and direct marketing agency. The units will be rebranded under the KB+B name, MDC said.

The sale follows the reorganization of the new business department across the network, and a change in management at Kirshenbaum Bond San Francisco, formerly KB+P West. Both changes were part of an effort to consolidate operations from the network’s New York office and to unify the agency’s brand, shop representatives have said. Partners Jon Bond and Richard Kirshenbaum said those changes were not sparked by interest from MDC.

“A lot of our clients are disgruntled ex-holding company clients, so we were really looking to have our cake and eat it too,” said Bond. “We were looking for a non-invasive partner, somebody that would be supportive but not controlling.”

Bond called MDC Partners “the patron saint of creative agencies.” MDC also holds stakes in creative shops Crispin Porter + Bogusky in Miami and Margeotes|Fertitta + Partners in New York. Bond said capital from MDC would allow the shop to pursue opening a multicultural unit, an overseas office and to expand the San Francisco outpost.

“We want to first make San Francisco an exact mirror reflection of New York,” Bond said, bringing Dotglu, Media Kitchen and Lime to the West Coast.

Formed in 1987, KB+P claims overall billings in excess of $500 million and revenue of $50 million, as well as more than 200 employees in New York and San Francisco. Clients include Andrew Jergens, Hennessy, Kenneth Cole, Snapple and Target Stores.