July 9, 2008
IPG Moves to Build on Success in Media Operations – Creates ‘Mediabrands’ to Lead Holding Company’s Media Assets and Names Nick Brien As President and CEO
The Interpublic Group (NYSE: IPG) announced today a new structure and a number of senior level personnel moves that the company believes will help it build on recent success posted by its media offerings during the past 18 months, dating to the introduction of the holding company's "aligned" media strategy and its subsequent decision to assign oversight of operational efficiency and increased collaboration across its media units to a task force led by Nick Brien.
"The moves we are making today are part of an ongoing evolution in our approach to media as an increasingly strategic and high-value marketing service," said Michael I. Roth, IPG's Chairman and CEO. "The creation of 'Mediabrands' will allow our media companies to share and leverage resources, as required to meet the needs of our clients in a highly complex and rapidly-changing media landscape that's being transformed by digital and the proliferation of content and media platforms. The terrific new talent we are bringing on board reflects the success we have been seeing, in terms of the competitiveness and reputation of our media brands, as well as the dramatically improved financial performance at our media operations. Nick's accomplishments as leader of our media task force and the ability he has demonstrated to work closely and effectively with the senior IPG management team, confirm that he is the best choice to lead our media assets as we seek to accelerate collaboration between our media agencies and deliver the highest performance standards in media to our clients in a very dynamic marketplace."In his new role, Mr. Brien will have management responsibility for global media networks UM and Initiative, IPG's centralized negotiation entity Magna and media barter group Magna Trading, dedicated Johnson&Johnson agency J3 and diversified agencies NSA, OSI and Wahlstrom, as well as marketing accountability expert MAP and IPG's Emerging Media Lab.
"I am excited by this opportunity to lead an extremely talented, diverse and collaborative leadership team to imagine new approaches for delivering our clients the greatest business impact through media and marketing excellence. Media's contribution to delivering marketing break-through has never been greater and we are committed to doing what is necessary to reinvent the media agency model as we know it," said Mr. Brien. "The fact that two world-class talents such as Matt Seiler and Michael Hudes are joining us not only validates our vision for IPG Mediabrands, it gives me even greater confidence that we can successfully build on our recent momentum. Matt is an exceptional marketer and leader. His insights are valued by senior level clients and his experience will be invaluable in accelerating the velocity of UM and further delivering on the promise of 'Next Thing Now.' Michael has a deep understanding into emerging media and business models, which are increasingly vital to anyone doing business anywhere in the media marketplace. He will help us shape not only our strong diversified companies but Mediabrands as a whole to meet the challenges of the new digital age. Both of these senior brand leaders join Richard Beaven, WW CEO of Initiative, to create a powerful leadership bench across all of our key media businesses."
IPG reiterated that it has no plans to combine its global media networks and will continue to operate the Initiative and UM brands as independent entities, each aligned where appropriate with its respective full service marketing network partner (McCann Worldgroup for UM and Draftfcb for Initiative).
Matt Seiler brings a unique background to his new role, having served in senior account, strategy and integration roles at Omnicom, as well as a key media executive. Most recently, he was President and CEO of PHD North America. Before joining PHD, Seiler was Executive Vice President at Omnicom, where he led integration efforts, most notably the oversight of that holding company's operating units working on the PepsiCo business. Prior to joining Omnicom, Seiler served as Director of Strategic Planning at BBDO New York. "I am thrilled to be joining Nick and the impressive team he has built at what is clearly an incredible time both in IPG media's evolution, and in the market as a whole," said Seiler. "Universal McCann's client roster is second to none and will allow me to play on a very dynamic stage," he commented.
In his new position, Michael Hudes will lead the diversified media services and strategic development for Mediabrands. Previously, Hudes was the Global Director of Digital Media for ClearChannel. Prior to that position, Hudes was President and Chief Operating Officer of AdSpace Networks, a pioneer digital media network and developer of software for managing advertising and promotion in public spaces. Formerly, Hudes was President and CEO of Organic, where he oversaw the company's evolution from a small web site builder into a leading provider of global digital marketing services. "I'm very excited to be joining Nick and the executive team at Mediabrands at a critical juncture for the global advertising marketplace," offered Hudes. "IP-based technology has radically reshaped the relationship between businesses, brands and consumers with all media. This has created significant opportunities and challenges to serving our clients in ways unimagined even a few years ago - by creating new tools, media channels and business models for our industry," he said.
Interpublic is one of the world's leading organizations of advertising agencies and marketing services companies. Major global brands include Draftfcb, FutureBrand, GolinHarris International, Initiative, Jack Morton Worldwide, Lowe Worldwide, Magna, McCann Erickson, Momentum, MRM Worldwide, Octagon, Universal McCann and Weber Shandwick. Leading domestic brands include Campbell-Ewald, Carmichael Lynch, Deutsch, Hill Holliday, Mullen, The Martin Agency and R/GA. For more information, please visit www.interpublic.com.