IPG Confirms Job Cuts at Kinesso and Matterkind

The overhaul involves dozens of layoffs impacting 4% of global headcount

The changes involved job cuts across Kinesso and Matterkind's New York and California offices. Matterkind
Headshot of Ronan Shields

Interpublic Group units Kinesso and Matterkind are implementing an overhaul, a move that has involved dozens of layoffs across its U.S. offices with the majority impacting its New York City headquarters, Adweek has learned.

Sources had suggested the restructure involved anywhere up to 70 job cuts, but Adweek understands the number is closer to 50, equating to approximately 4% of the duo’s combined global headcount.

Those affected were informed of the job cuts in recent days, with remaining team members notified of the changes at an internal all-hands meeting earlier today.

A statement from a Kinesso spokesperson claimed such decisions “are never made lightly” and that “we have made every effort to treat our teams with kindness” by providing a long transition period.

The statement read: “As part of our overall business strategy, we are evolving our workplace strategies to make more use of our global Center of Excellence hubs. Regrettably, this resulted in the relocation of some job roles and the elimination of others, impacting ~4% of the global workforce across Kinesso and Matterkind.” 

Most of the jobs that were cut involved “production/process roles” in the duo’s New York City office with these duties “re-allocated as part of an international hubbing workplace strategy,” according to the statement.

The spokesperson stated the reduction in headcount was not a direct reaction to client losses or in-housing, instead focusing on how the overhaul will help create greater consistency across its global footprint.

“This is not merely about cost savings, but is a part of a wider transformation strategy for Kinesso and Matterkind that includes investing in our international centers focused on product and service innovation,” read the Kinesso spokesperson’s statement. 

“These changes are not as a direct result of Covid-19. However, like all businesses, our business has been affected by the pandemic and has had to make difficult decisions to optimize our new reality and ways of working.”

Like other holding groups in the media and advertising industry, IPG implemented a number of furloughs and layoffs earlier this year in a cull that impacted up to 5% of its headcount with CEO Michael Roth taking a voluntary 20% pay cut in March along with other senior executives at the holding company.

Matterkind, IPG’s programmatic activation arm formerly known as Cadreon, boasts a client roster including blue chip brands such as Amazon, Cox Communications, Epic Games and Zillow, with offices in New York City, Los Angeles, San Francisco and elsewhere in the U.S.

Meanwhile, Kinesso acts as the holding group’s centralized tech unit with the pair combining with Acxiom, its $2.3 billion acquisition, to form its strategic data services arm. Earlier this year, IPG unveiled ConneCXions, an offering of services that would enable the different cohorts within the IPG holding group to work together more efficiently.

@ronan_shields ronan.shields@adweek.com Ronan Shields is a programmatic reporter at Adweek, focusing on ad-tech.