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Doner

Doner Cuts Staff Once Again

We hesitate to call this a recurring theme as it’s been a few months since we last reported on cuts at Doner, but by our count, this is the third time this year we’ve had to report on something like this regarding the MDC-owned agency. Anyhow, we’ve received confirmation that Doner has made staffing adjustments today. As is the norm, no specifics including approximate numbers are being divulged, but here’s a statement from an agency spokesperson that sheds a little light:

“Today, we implemented staffing changes across the agency which have impacted about two percent of our staff.  Affected employees were provided with severance and support for new employment opportunities.  While it’s never easy, we’re confident that this will enable us to best allocate our resources while continuing to effectively serve our clients and build our business.”

We’re hearing that the Detroit and Cleveland offices were those affected by the “staffing changes.”

Caruso Leaving Doner

We’ve received confirmation that Joe Caruso, who’s spent nearly 20 years at Doner and has most recently served as the MDC-owned agency’s EVP/director of integrated production, is leaving. When asked for comment, the Doner camp has told us that details on when is last day is and/or the agency’s plans for his replacement are being kept “confidential” for now. Sorry, kids. Caruso was elevated to his most recent position three years ago and prior to that, spent well over a decade serving as SVP/director of Doner’s integrated studios unit. That’s what we got for now, but we’ll keep you posted if and when we hear more.

It Looks Like Doner Landed a New ‘Colorful Fish’

Via the tips line, we received what appears to be a memo from Doner top dog Rob Strasberg that goes a little something like this:

“Great news! We’ve landed a big, colorful fish from San Francisco – Chad Ackerly.
Not only a super talent but a super good guy, Chad comes to Doner with tons of experience doing great work for all types of clients – not to mention a stellar new biz track record.
I’m super pumped and stoked and jazzed (not really sure about jazzed – but my toes are tapping) for him to start at the start of June.

Check out some of his work and his bio.

http://cargocollective.com/chadackley/

http://cargocollective.com/chadackley/Bio
Rob

Rob Strasberg
Co-CEO/ Chief Creative Officer”

We’re trying to get official confirmation from the MDC-owned, Southfield, MI-based agency, but in the meantime, Strasberg might want to get the spelling of his new hire’s name right as it’s actually Chad Ackley (yeah, we know, calling the kettle black, blah blah). Anyhow, Ackley has spent the last decade at DDB San Francisco, where he primarily served as group creative director  on several campaigns for various Clorox Company brands such as Tilex, Pine-Sol and, yes, Clorox. Ackley started out as an art director at DDB SF but was soon elevated to one of the first creative director roles at the agency. Prior to his time at DDB, Ackley spent nearly a decade as well at Leo Burnett. We’ll update if and when we find out what his new title is. 

Doner Pays Tribute to Slim Shady in Portfolio Night 11 Teaser (NSFW Language)

Yeah, we couldn’t resist. Again, by sheer coincidence, we have another Doner-related item today thanks to this clip that dropped in our inbox less than a half-hour ago. We’ve already reported on Portfolio Night 11 and posted a couple videos along with it last week, but entering the ring now is Doner, which is celebrating the fact that the Motor City is taking part in the annual recruiting/portfolio review event for the very first time.

So, how else would one inaugurate Detroit’s inclusion into the festivities other than giving a shout-out to native son Eminem. Ladies and gents, we give you “9 Mile,” which of course pays tribute to the hip-hop star’s film 8 Mile and gives a nod to its classic freestyle battle scene but, yes, with a twist. Guess getting your portfolio ripped apart by Doner EVP/ECD Brad Emmett is just as humiliating as getting schooled on the mic by Rabbit. Credits after the jump.

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Doner Makes Some More Cuts

Just less than three weeks after reporting about staff being let go at both Doner’s Detroit HQ and Cleveland office, we’ve received confirmation that the MDC-owned agency has once again made some cuts. Here’s a statement from an agency spokesperson:

“We have expanded Doner’s operations to include Detroit, Cleveland, Los Angeles, London, and now, Atlanta.  As part of this expansion, we have structured our Atlanta operations to be better aligned and integrated with the Doner network.  This includes a small staff reduction amounting to about one percent of our employees.”

Once again, more specifics haven’t been revealed by the Doner camp, but tipsters say that 10 in Atlanta office were let go at the end of last week, cutting staff count from approximately 50 to 40. From what we believe, the “one percent” reflects the network as a whole. We’ll keep you posted if we hear more.

Doner Cuts Staff

We certainly hope this isn’t this the prevailing theme today, but we’ve received confirmation that now it’s Doner has had to cut staff. Unfortunately, unlike what tipsters have been telling us, the reductions weren’t just limited to the Cleveland office, either. We’ve received word from sources familiar with the matter that the MDC-owned agency has cut staff across the network, which also includes in both Cleveland and its Detroit HQ (Update: The Los Angeles was actually not affected).

A Doner spokesperson tells us,”While it is never a pleasant thing to do, we recently made some reductions in staff which have impacted less than 3% of our employees.  These reductions come as we continue to invest in our creative, digital and strategic talent as part of our continuous effort to best align our resources with the work we’re producing for our clients.”

Here’s Some Clarification on MDC’s Media Moves in Atlanta

So, this morning, we received a tip that raised our eyebrows regarding the Atlanta operations of a couple of familiar MDC shops, namely Doner and KBS+–specifically the latter’s spinoff unit, Media Kitchen. The tip we received said verbatim, “MDC shaking up Atlanta presence, shifting from KBSP to Doner in the market. Staff told today.”

Well, according to sources familiar with the matter, the situation doesn’t seem as dire as what our spy’s words lead us to believe. According to our sources, after taking a look at the collaboration of MDC’s Maxxcom Global Media group (which was formed earlier this year) and work on shared clients among its media agencies, the holding company thought it best that Media Kitchen Atlanta and Doner’s media clients “would benefit from even greater alignment of the two groups.” Well, consider it done as Media Kitchen Atlanta is indeed being aligned with and will be managed by Doner.

MKA was launched in spring 2010 following MDC’s decision to expand KBS+P into the 404 area. We’ve been told that no cuts are planned as a result of this latest move.

Doner Duets with Paul McCartney

It looks like the one and only Paul McCartney is on the promotional trail, having released his peculiarly titled album “Kisses on the Bottom” this week. Macca as they call him is not only gearing up for a tour, but also took a day or two in London last month to shoot this spot that’s part of the ongoing Harman/JBL “Hear the Truth” campaign from Southfield, MI’s own, Doner. Sir Paul’s rather timely, new single, “My Valentine,” is the featured tune and we have to say, the man himself lo0ks pretty good for almost-70. Despite the low-key mood, we’ll take this over Maroon 5 any time. Look for this spot featuring McCartney in all his smooth, romantic form to break on the telly during the Grammys on Sunday.

For Those About to Rock–Oh Wait, Never Mind

Have you ever been at a friend’s party when Maroon 5 comes blaring in on the house stereo system and thought, “Wow, this band sucks. Could it just be the speakers?” With JBL brand speakers, you can now put your theory to the test and come to the realization that, wow, Maroon 5 sucks even more in high definition sound than they do through cheap, generic speakers.

The “Hear the Truth” campaign from Doner and audio equipment manufacturer and marketer HARMAN features a truly bizarre variety of artists praising the quality of JBL speakers. So, what artists featured in the campaign do JBL speakers allow you to hear as the musicians intended? Aside from Maroon 5 (bleh), there’s China’s “King of Pop” Li Huan (huh?), sailing enthusiasts Styx (weird), 80s rockers Night Ranger (wait, really?), and Grammy and Academy Award-winning composer A.R. Rahman. We’ll assume that Christmas-destroyers Train prefer a different set of speakers.

The campaign featuring the lineup of artists is intended for a multiyear run on TV, in print, on the radio and through social media channels.

Mike Brooks Joins Doner as CD

Well, here’s a tale of a Creative Circus grad made good, we suppose. Mike Brooks, who went to the school from 2000-2004, has joined the roster of Doner as creative director. We’re still awaiting word on what accounts he’s working on, but prior to Doner, Brooks (dressed here like one of Tony Soprano’s goons) worked at McCann Erickson’s Birmingham, MI office as an ACD across all media and spent three years as an art director at Organic before that.

Update: Brooks started this week and will be working on various agency accounts in Doner’s HQ.

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