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Interpublic

Stoller Hops from Omnicom to IPG

Nearly two years to the day that he left Organic for the second time to join up with sister Omnicom agency BBDO as EVP, director of digital strategy for North America, Chad Stoller is once again moving on and assuming a role at rival holding company, Interpublic. Stoller actually put in his resignation at BBDO a few weeks back and from what we’ve been told, he’s taking on a post at IPG’s Media Lab. We’re getting specifics on his new title, etc., but if you need some resume material, Stoller kickstarted his career at Arnell, where he spent nearly 15 years and last served as director, communication solutions.

BBDO tells us that they’ll continue to bolster their digital strategy capabilities but there are no immediate plans to replace Stoller.

Update: Scratch that. BBDO tells us that the agency is looking to replace Stoller and “currently finalizing candidates.”

Momentum Officially Launches Entertainment Group

It took six months after the initial announcement, but Deadline.com is reporting that IPG’s Momentum is finally launching its new “future-generation content studio” dubbed Momentum Entertainment Group. As we noted back in January, the leadership will be toplined by Momentum chairman/CEO Chris Weil and Tribal DDB co-founder Steven Marrs, who will serve as president/managing partner of MEG and work out of New York.

According to Deadline, Momentum Entertainment Group will also have offices in Hollywood and New Orleans. Marrs says in a statement, “In creating Momentum Entertainment Group, we are building an innovative way of providing the Hollywood creative community with unique financing and packaging models to connect with broadcasters and brands worldwide.” You can read Weil’s original memo regarding MEG here.

IPG’s Initiative Evolves Digital Offering, Makes Dave Rosner King

IPG-owned agency Initiative is making some notable changes, merging its Digital, Innovations and Amphibian units into one entity and promoting Dave Rosner to head of the integrated group.

Rosner, whose official title is now EVP and director of Digital & Innovations, has served as head of Initiative’s Innovations unit since 2009. Despite the bump-up, he will maintain his old post while also spearheading the East Coast Digital team as well as Amphibian, which will focus on digital video content extending into TV.

Just like Captain Planet brought together the powers of Earth, Fire, Wind, Water, and Heart, Rosner (whose superhero-worthy jawline can be peeped above) is tasked with bringing together the Innovations, Digital, and Amphibian teams to create one cohesive communications force. Ok, maybe, it’s not that dramatic.

Anyhow, Rosner and his team are self-identified “pop-culture addicts” (join the club) who are passionate about what they do, so let’s see what kind of adventures they’ll embark on in the coming months.

IPG Joins Other Holding Firms in Reporting Q2 Success

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Like Omnicom before it, Interpublic Group is reporting a solid Q2 as the agency holding company announced that for the quarter ending June 30, earnings rose almost 200% to $82.5 million, compared with earnings of $27.8 million in the same period last year.

Meanwhile, IPG revenue was up 9.7 percent in the second quarter of 2010 compared with the same period in 2009 with the tally hitting $1.62 billion. In a statement, Interpublic chairman/CEO Michael Roth seems optimistic enough, saying, “With revenue stability and growth back in the picture, we feel we are very much on track to deliver on our operating margin objective of better than eight percent for 2010. Combined with our commitment to put the cash on our balance sheet to work on behalf of shareholders, we believe our financial performance positions us well to enhance shareholder value going forward.”

Roth added that thanks to economic recovery, IPG will be able to get back on a positive margin trajectory and even increased its margin outlook for the year to better than 8 percent.

More: “IPG CEO: The Worst May Be Over

IPG Makes Brazilian Investment

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Interpublic Group (IPG) announced the acquisition of Sao Paulo-based CUBOCC, a digital agency that’s self-described as a “Monster Whatever Hotshop” on its Web site. Founded in 2004 by Roberto Martini, who we’ve been told has been a part of the digital marketing industry since 1995, CUBOCC currently houses 106 employees and counts Unilever as a major client. Case in point, check out the shop’s work for Axe including “Dark Temptation” as well as Rexona’s “Men Tuning Race”.

In a statement, IPG chairman/CEO Michael Roth says the CUBOCC investment will give the holding company greater foothold in the South American region. “They’ll add local expertise and great digital credentials in a dynamic market to the IPG roster and further strengthen our various agencies’ ability to service clients and provide best-in-class digital strategy in an increasingly important part of the world.”

Financial terms of the deal were not disclosed.

More: “IPG Picks Nick Brien to Succeed John Dooner as McCann Worldgroup CEO, Launches Creative Technology Unit

IPG Picks Nick Brien to Succeed John Dooner as McCann Worldgroup CEO, Launches Creative Technology Unit

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It was early fall when we last heard rumblings about who would replace McCann Worldgroup CEO John Dooner &#151 an IPG subsidiary whispered that Nick Brien was at the top of the list. Today, the agency announced Dooner will stay on as Chairman as Brien transitions in.

As the Interpublic Group of Companies’ biggest player, McCann desperately needed a leader who would continue that tradition. In 2008, their $2.5 billion in earnings accounted for a third of the holding company’s revenue, according to the Wall Street Journal. AdAge reports this figure at 40%, but we’re told by an executive close to the matter that WSJ’s figure is more accurate.

Though the CEO announce is probably not high on your priority list, it’s worth noting if only because speculation as to who would replace Dooner has been high for so long. Brien’s most recent post was as CEO of Mediabrands, which oversees IPG’s many media entities in Universal McCann, Initiative and Magna Globa.

Click continued for details on SPLIT, McCann’s new creative technology unit.

More:McCann Worldgroup “Official Marketing Services Provider” for London Olympics

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IPG CEO: The Worst May Be Over

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At the Global Media and Communications Conference yesterday, Interpublic Group CEO Michael Roth cautiously said that the worst effects of the advertising downturn may be over and IPG should be on the upswing in 2010.

Of course, it helps that IPG took “11 percent of…people costs out” and its agencies like Deutsch and Martin Agency won VW and Pizza Hut, respectively. According to NYT’s Media Decoder, Roth said during his speech that if indeed “the worst is behind us,” then big severance payments “should be behind us” meaning significant layoffs could be ending and that “the second half of ’10 will be better than the first” for the third-largest advertising holding company.

ABC News adds that analysts expects IPG to report a 12% drop in revenue, excluding the effect of acquisitions, in the fourth quarter compared to 14% in Q3.

More: “Key Points from IPG’s Earnings Call

Key Points From IPG Earnings Call

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Earlier today we posted the general outlook for IPG; bad. Here are some other key points, more specific to the advertising side, you may be interested in if you work at or compete with an IPG shop (included in the call were Jerry Leshne IPG’s SVP Investor Relations; Michael Roth Chairman/CEO and Frank Mergenthaler, EVP, CFO:

&#151 “As was the case in the second quarter, our performance in Q3 continued to reflect the impact that the global recession has been having on demand for advertising and marketing services. Organic revenue was down 14.2%, about the same level as last quarter.”

&#151 “…marketing and advertising reductions by clients led to a decrease of 18% in the quarter while our organic revenue decrease was 14.2%. To varying degrees these challenges were evident in all disciplines and markets and nearly all client sectors. As Michael indicated, the impact continues to be greatest technology and telecom and the auto sectors.”

&#151 “…we have also begun to see an increase in new business activity, which earlier this year had essentially ground to a halt in many world markets. While this isn’t a definitive indicator of an advertising recovery, it certainly is an encouraging sign. We are equally pleased that a review of all major industry pitches over the past year shows that not only are we being included in every significant opportunity out there in which we are not blocked due to client conflict, we are also winning in a broad cross section of our agencies.”

&#151 “Another potential driver of an advertising recovery could be the automotive sector, which we have called out as a contributing factor in our organic revenue decreases the past few quarters. Now, as the auto industry emerges from what has been a very troubled period, it could represent significant upside for providers of marketing services with both existing and new clients. The Volkswagen win at Deutsch is a recent example as is the opportunity to win Cadillac and GM and Media Brand’s involvement in the global Hyundai media review. There will likely be increased spend if the category next year as well, which we see as a real opportunity.”

What do we take away from this? IPG is really excited about VW and the credibility money such a famous brand will being to the company.

More:IPG’s Revenue Down 18% to $1.43 Billion, Worst Report so Far

IPG’s Revenue Down 18% to $1.43 Billion, Worst Report so Far

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Advertising holding company Interpublic Group (IPG), parent to McCann Erickson Worldwide; Deutsch Inc. a Lowe & Partners Company; DraftFCB and many others released its Q3 earnings report today.

“Revenue of $1.43 billion in the third quarter of 2009 was down 18.0% compared with the same period in 2008,” the company reported in an earnings statement. “For the first nine months of 2009, revenue was $4.23 billion, down 16.5% compared to the first nine months of last year.”

The report, which follows Havas and Omnicom, shows the worst results so far (though neither Havas nor Omni had good results, either). Part of the problem is undoubtedly Campbell Ewald client General Motors &#151 a company that once lead the industry in volume scaled back to a trickle over the last year.

One piece of this news you may have predicted: operating costs were down for the advertising giant. “During the third quarter of 2009, salaries and related expenses were $943.5 million, down 13.7% compared to the same period in 2008.” Even with diminished costs, the results are not pretty. Stay tuned for WPP’s earnings report tomorrow.

More:Omnicom Earnings Report: Year Over Outlook is Down

Business Insider Puts IPG on “Veering Toward Bankruptcy” List

Here’s a little blurb for you &#151 Business Insider put together a listicle of companies that for one reason or another are nearing bankruptcy.

Business Insider:

As one of the largest advertising and marketing companies in the world, IPG was slammed by the global recession.

As the company’s CEO said during recent second quarter results, the downturn ‘is proving steeper and more lasting than expected’.

Revenues have fallen double digits and the company’s exposure to General Motors as its largest client hasn’t helped.

BNET’s Jim Edwards notes that IPG is hoping for nominal margins in the next year &#151 hardly a nail in the coffin. The company’s stock is doing so so, and some seem to think it will continue to rise &#151 but let’s not forget IPG’s Q2 downshift, which amounted to 20% revenue fall.

And lest you’d forgotten, here’s a list of some of IPG’s more prominent agencies/firms.

&#151 TM Advertising
&#151 Campbell-Ewald
&#151 Campbell Mithun
&#151 Carmichael Lynch
&#151 Deutsch Inc.
&#151 Draftfcb
&#151 Hill Holliday
&#151 Kaleidoscope Sports and Entertainment
&#151 Lowe Worldwide
&#151 McCann Erickson
&#151 Momentum Worldwide
&#151 Mullen
&#151 MRM Worldwide
&#151 R/GA
&#151 Reprise Media
&#151 The Martin Agency
&#151 Universal McCann
&#151 Weber Shandwick

More:
IPG Reports Q2 Profit Slide

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