Adidas has appointed the Amsterdam-based creative start-up, 180 -
launched this month by a trio of former Wieden & Kennedy executives - as
its second-string global creative agency.
Neil Simpson, the global advertising director for Adidas, kicked off the
creative pitch in June (Campaign, 26 June).
He has spoken to a number of agencies around the world over the past
four months including the UK-based Circus and BMP DDB. Leagas Delaney,
Adidas’s lead agency, also made a presentation.
180 is run by Alex Melvin, Chris Mendola and Larry Frey, a planner,
account director and art director respectively. All three have worked on
high-profile accounts including Nike and Coca-Cola.
Melvin and Mendola were fired from W&K after allegedly working on the
Adidas pitch while at the agency (Campaign, 28 August). W&K handles the
account of Adidas’s rival, Nike. Frey most recently worked at W&K
Simpson said: ’We are not looking to replace Leagas Delaney but to add
resource. Leagas Delaney chose to present to us. We learned two things
in this process: first we already have a highly creative agency in
Leagas Delaney. Second, we have found another agency with a passion for
the Adidas brand in 180.’
Melvin said: ’There is a massive opportunity for an agency that does
work for the world. The best way of solving problems is not as a
traditional multinational network but with multicultural teams.’
UK-born Melvin started work in 1983 at Allen Brady and Marsh. Mendola
and Frey, who are American, began their careers at Chiat/Day and Ayer in
1988 and 1981 respectively.
Simpson has yet to announce 180’s initial project.
At the same time, Adidas has pooled its continental European media
buying into Carat after a separate four-way pitch involving MindShare,
Optimedia and the incumbent in most territories, Initiative Media.
Leagas Delaney and New PHD retain the UK business.