MindShare Breaks Ground in U.S.

It’s Official: WPP Merges JWT, Ogilvy Media Assets; Fills Top Spots
NEW YORK–WPP Group plc’s MindShare Worldwide, formed by combining the media assets of Ogilvy & Mather and J. Walter Thompson, has unveiled its U.S. operating structure and senior management team.
In North America, MindShare will be run by three top media executives who held senior posts at the WPP shops.
Comprising the MindShare Office of the President are Jean Pool, JWT’s executive vice president/director of North American Media Services, who was named president/operations and will include spot broadcast as one of her responsibilities; Peter Chrisanthopoulos, Ogilvy’s president, broadcast and programming/USA, now MindShare president/national broadcast and programming; and Ray Simko, former senior partner/New York media head, Ogilvy, who was appointed president/strategic planning. They report to Irwin Gotlieb, MindShare, North America chairman and CEO. In addition, Larry Cole, who was executive vice president/U.S. media director, Ogilvy & Mather North America, was named vice chairman of MindShare.
When it formally opens its headquarters here this Friday the company will manage about $7 billion in billings through 10 U.S. offices. Gotlieb said that the remaining management structure will be determined after the upfront TV negotiation season, which begins next month. “We made a decision to declare our leadership so [the new unit] could properly deploy,” he said.
WPP launched MindShare in Europe, Asia and Latin America in 1997, and that year, JWT and Ogilvy merged broadcast buying. Collectively, JWT and Ogilvy’s key clients include American Express, Ford, IBM, Kimberly-Clark, Kraft, Mattel and Unilever.