SS+K Seattle Targets High-Tech

Having lured a former Microsoft communications executive to its shop, the New York agency Shepardson Stern and Kaminsky (SS+K) is planting its flag in the Seattle market to expand its burgeoning “digital practice.”

The agency announced that Greg Shaw, the Microsoft’s general manager for corporate public relations, has joined as an equity partner. He will spearhead the efforts to establish a stronger agency presence in the tech-heavy Pacific Northwest. Shaw becomes the first new partner in the agency’s eight-year history.

With the opening of an outpost in Seattle, Shaw says he hopes to draw new business from Microsoft and other area firms. Microsoft’s ad business is now handled by McCann-Erickson.

Shaw said SS+K is gaining ground as a multifaceted ad agency that offers corporate communications, marketing and research services. The shop also has the backing of the Los Angeles-based rep firm Creative Artists Agency, which holds a 40 percent stake in SS+K. “[CAA] helps us keep our finger on the pulse of culture,” he said.

“Seattle is blossoming; there are tremendous opportunities for advertising and public relations in this area,” added Shaw, who served as a group vice president for Ketchum in Washington, D.C. before signing on with Microsoft six years ago.

“My role is to serve existing clients, while attracting new ones who can benefit from our integrated approach,” Shaw said.

SS+K president Mark Kaminsky said the addition of Shaw is a major development for the company.