Wanamaker Comes to Dallas

Chris Bryan has been recruited to establish Wanamaker Associates’ advertising consultancy practice in Dallas.

Bryan is the founder and former owner of B.A. Advertising in Dallas, a $42 million agency that folded earlier this year after its primary client, General Motors, consolidated its regional association advertising elsewhere.

“It’s been tougher to close [B.A. Advertising] than it was to open it,” said Bryan. “We did go out and add new business, but it wasn’t going to be enough. I just felt if I was ever going to make a change, this would be the time to do it.”

“I wanted to consider who was strong in the [consultancy] field,” Bryan continued. “In my research I didn’t find much of a presence of anyone here in Dallas. It was a perfect fit because the partners at Wanamaker were very open to having a Dallas presence. Certainly national clients in general are looking more at Texas.”

Said company president Ken Bowes in a statement: “Chris brings a great background to us. He’s got experience in retail and franchise marketing, field marketing, media strategy, media buying, sponsorship evaluation and relationship marketing.”

The Dallas location is expected to expand to a handful of employees next year. Atlanta-based Wanamaker also has an office in London. The company will be the first nationally known consultancy to establish a foothold in the Southwest.

“We’ve been working with corporations and agencies across the country for several years while working from Atlanta,” said Wanamaker chairman Rod Hanlon in a statement. “Now we feel the time is right to plant our flag in different regions.”

“Demand has been very strong,” added Bryan. “We’ve done 20 or more agency searches this year, which I believe to be a record for us. We’ve also done Hispanic agency searches, which is something new.”

Wanamaker provides independent counsel to clients including Johnson & Johnson, BellSouth Corp., Hewlett-Packard, Papa John’s International, Publix Supermarkets and Verizon.

Most recently, Wanamaker conducted high-profile general market and Hispanic reviews for the more than $200 million account ofCingular Wireless in Atlanta. That business was awarded to BBDO in New York and Atlanta, and The Vidal Partnership, New York, respectively.