Smith Barney Hires Merkley for $15 Mil. Account

NEW YORK Smith Barney has hired Merkley Newman Harty & Partners to handle creative duties on its estimated $15 million account, the client confirmed.

The selection, which was expected [Adweek, June 16], came after a review in which the finalists were Merkley and two other New York shops: Kirshenbaum Bond & Partners and McGarry Bowen.

New York-based Merkley, an Omnicom Group shop, now handles advertising for four Citigroup entities: Smith Barney, Travelers insurance, Women & Co. and Citigroup itself.

The client selected Merkley based on its “knowledge and expertise,” said Bret Sanford-Chung, senior vice president, director of advertising and marketing communications. The agency’s first work is expected in the fall.

Smith Barney also is looking at several undisclosed shops to handle its media duties and hopes to pick an agency soon, Sanford-Chung said.