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Young & Rubicam

Y&R Division SicolaMartin Rebrands as Y&R Austin

And thus, the Matt Anthony era at Y&R begins. In what we’ve been told is his first major announcement since taking over for Carter Murray at said agency as North American president/CEO earlier this year, Anthony has announced that Y&R’s Austin-based SicolaMartin will now be known as Y&R Austin. As a result, Y&R’s North American network now spans five markets, which also includes likes of Y&R Midwest, West  sorry, California and New York.

In a statement, Anthony, who joined Y&R after spending nearly two decades at WPP sibling VML, which he was a founding partner of, says, “We are excited to make this formal integration of the Austin agency to our North America network. The truth is we have worked alongside SicolaMartin as partners within Y&R for many years.  While the transition will be seamless and easy, its impact will be powerful.  Y&R Austin has a great offering, fully integrated capabilities, and a strong culture. Their clients will benefit from access to our talent and resources.  But it is also clear that Y&R clients in other markets will benefit from their expertise and experience.”

We’ve been told that the 28-year-old shop formerly known as SicolaMartin, which has shared clients with its parent including Dell and SanDisk since joining as a subsidiary in 2001, will house a staff of approximately 50. Cherie Cox, who has been with SicolaMartin for 20 years and most currently serves as its CEO, will keep the same title at Y&R Austin.

UNCF, Y&R Go Beyond Donations, Asking for ‘Investment in the Future’

Since 1944, the United Negro College Fund has operated under the banner “A Mind is a Terrible Thing to Waste.” Today, they’re updating to the too-long slogan “A Mind is a Terrible Thing to Waste But a Wonderful Thing to Invest In.”

Regardless of its verbosity, Y&R New York and the Ad Council’s new campaign is a smart, relevant adaptation. Instead of accepting donations for their fund, UNCF is “taking the cause straight to where the money is,” and has created the first-ever stock for social change. Columbia University economist Clive Belfield created an algorithm to determine the value of a share, which investors can purchase via Better Futures’ website.

The Better Futures campaign puts concept into practice, and shows people that they’re not just giving money, they’re investing in future generations. Y&R’s pro bono work will include print and TV PSAs that “use real stories from real UNCF students to show how that investment will pay dividends for all our futures,” says Michael L. Lomax, president/CEO of UNCF, in a statement. If investors are inspired to get involved, the Better Futures stock could be Wall Street’s most meaningful.

Credits after the jump.

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Y&R Celebrates 90 Years in Business with a Hashtag

 

One of the oldest agencies in America, Young & Rubicam turns a whopping 90 years old tomorrow, and they’re throwing a party.

Now, a 90th trip around the sun can’t be taken lightly. I mean think of all the thousands of people whose hard work kept Y&R going through the Great Depression, World War II, and a third event of equal or greater importance! So, as any great agency in a similar position would, Y&R is celebrating nine decades with a hashtag, #advertisingis. It’s a pretty big deal.

Those who tweet their opinion about what #advertisingis (Bread? Love? Incest? Spite?) tomorrow between the hours of 2-3:30 pm ET will see their tweets appear on a large interactive digital billboard in Times Square. It’s supposed to be a big billboard, probably almost as big as the giant American Eagle billboard, but not quite. Still, pretty big one would assume. Add your Twitter avatar to Y&R’s birthday mosaic, and watch the hashtag event of tomorrow live here.

Y&R NY Officially Bounces from Madison Avenue

Well, WPP-owned Y&R New York has stuck to its guns and as noted back at the end of 2011, the agency is officially making its move to Columbus Circle on Monday, thus saying goodbye to Madison Ave, where it’s resided for the last 87 (!) years.

The agency’s global CEO David Sable (who you see above christening Y&R Way) has this to say in a statement: “This is a historic day. But Madison Avenue is a state of mind, not a state of place. Today, the Northeast corner of 40th street and Madison Avenue is Young & Rubicam Way. And the 285 Marquee is coming with us and will adorn the café in our new space. Since 1926, we have been definers of the best of the innovation of Madison Avenue – creative leaders, business shapers, inventors, innovators. We look forward to continuing that innovative, entrepreneurial spirit by creating Madison Avenue West in a new state-of-the art work environment that has been designed to accommodate who we are and how we work in the epicenter of New York City, the greatest media town in the world.”

As mentioned previously, the Y&R space at 3 Columbus Circle will not only occupy said agency, but WPP siblings including Wunderman, VML, Blast Radius, BrandBuzz, Bravo, Kang & Lee, KBM Group and ZAAZ.

 

Dell Ups its Game, Brings a Graphic Novel to Life

From Dell’s lead agency Y&R NY comes this enchanting new TV spot that tells the story of a cubicle slave named Thomas and his aspirations to be something more.

Obviously, 2013 finds Dell in quite a different spot than they were in a decade ago. While “Dude, You’re Getting a Dell” was seen as a major success in convincing parents worldwide that their college-bound spawn actually needed a computer, the company is now the butt of tech jokes. In fact, consider this headline from last week’s edition of The Onion: “Dell Acquired By Gateway 2000 In Merger Of 2 Biggest Names In Computer Technology.” Yes, Michael Dell‘s buyout of the company is seen to be as relevant as Gateway 2000. Ouch.

Dell has been relying big on Y&R, especially after parting ways with Sid Lee and Arnold in January. With spots like “Thomas: Creator of an Alternate Universe,” Y&R proves that Dell made a wise move consolidating their commercial work with one agency. Not only do we get some great visuals, but we actually see the Dell XPS laptop in action, looking (to be honest) surprisingly forward-thinking for a company that my generation sees as playing catch-up for the last few years. Add to great advertising some bold business moves, and Dell could yet find the pathway to long-term profitability. Credits and a behind-the-scenes clip after the jump.

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If You Care to Watch Y&R Destroy Antiquated Items, Now’s Your Chance

The letter you see above is rather self-explanatory and here is the link from Y&R, which sends you to the agency’s New Year’s salute. Wanna see a typewriter destroyed? See below. Each item set up for destruction comes with a little back story from the WPP shop, setting the stage for a little breaking of stuff (No need for the Limp Bizkit score, thankfully). Now, on with the show from Y&R NYC, which is set to move from its Madison Ave digs to Columbus Circle this year.

So Tell Us Ad Industry, Are You Feeling Cynical or Inspired?

Just for shits and giggles during Advertising Week, the folks at Y&R and VML launched a site that gauges the psyches of the ad community on specific days and events during the year. Whether it be Mother’s Day, Thanksgiving, the Mad Men premiere or, hell, Advertising Week, you can share your feelings by voting “Cynical” or “Inspired.” Wait, no Halloween? Anyhow, you can click through and check out a data visualization chart that displays cynicism levels. If anything, this will distract you from your day for two seconds.

The Y&R camp tells us, “We were asked to do a house ad that would run in the Advertising Week printed program guide. We quickly examined last year’s issue and saw that most ads from agencies weren’t too inspiring… Hey! That’s it! Most people in advertising are the opposite of inspired – cynical. And they’re probably cynical about Advertising Week. So how do we get them excited about it? We looked up the event list and noticed quite a few that were interesting and possibly inspiring. That’s when the idea crystallized – there are many events that happen every year that are deserving of both cynicism and inspiration.”

Credits after the jump.

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Y&R Taps Consultancy Vet for Chief Growth Officer Gig

David Sable & Co. have welcomed former Roth Associates EVP/lead consultant Cathy Cohan aboard to assume the new title of global chief growth officer at Y&R, a role which calls for her to drive new biz growth across the global agency network . Cohan, who spent five years in all at Roth, now essentially fills the new business executive vacancy left by Chris Hayes, who left Y&R to join Brooklyn-based Huge back in July.

Regarding Cohan’s return to the agency side, Y&R global CEO Sable says in a statement, “She has great intellect and instincts, as well as an enormous capacity for understanding an advertiser’s marketing needs and the right mix of resources that will meet them. It is a huge competitive advantage for us that she has experience as a consultant and as a client leader, as she helps us hone our marketing skills.”

Cohan’s first trek through the agency world including four-year stint as CMO at BBDO Atlanta and a lengthy gig as director of business development at JWT.

Yes, Wunderman West is Still a Thing, Kids, and Craig Evans is Now Commanding Creative

We can’t remember the last time we heard from the Wunderman camp (oh yeah, sorry). But now, the news shifts to the West Coast as the WPP/Y&R division has bumped up group creative director Craig Evans to ECD. Evans has spent over seven years at both Y&R and Wunderman, initially joining the former in 2004 before heading to the latter in 2010. Now, as head of creative at Wunderman West, he will lead up work for clients including Southwest Airlines and Invisalign at a network that counts offices in Irvine, San Francisco as well as Seattle.

During his career, Evans not only co-authored a book called Marketing Mojo, but co-led San Diego-based shops of his own such as Matthews|Evans|Albertazzi and Big Bang Idea Engineering. As one would expect, Evans’s boss, Wunderman West managing director Dan Olson, speaks highly of his new creative lead, saying in a statement that the ECD is “…unquestionably the hardest-working man in advertising – and one of the smartest. He’s a bit of a mad scientist – able to quickly dissect a problem and deliver astounding solutions that engage people.”

In case you were wondering, Evans is taking over for Anthony DiBiase, who moved on to a brief stint at CHI & Wunderman in Minneapolis, but is no longer with the agency.

Hotels.com Gets Animated Yet Again, Plays ‘Matchmaker’

Though Y&R Chicago took it back to “real-life” for a recent Hotels.com spot filmed during the Running of the Bulls (which a commenter that goes by Bob Winter assured us the agency’s creative team thought up before I suggested it last year), the brand is yet again employing whimsical animation for this above spot, “Matchmaking.”

In it, we find our large-headed protagonist walking through a mystical hotel where each room is themed, kind of like that hourly rate motel from Blue Valentine but decidedly less sleazy. Set to a big band track from late vocalist, actor and comedian Jimmy Durante (aka “Schnozzola”), the animation team from Cannes-winning prodco Nexus had their hands full creating a sprawling hotel that hides a different world behind each door.

So, readers, how do you like your Hotels.com spots? Do you like them cute and animated, or X-treme and death-defying?

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