The largest independent direct marketing agency in the US, Bronner
Slosberg Humphrey, has confirmed that it is setting up a UK office, to
be called BSH UK.
The agency - whose Boston-based US operation billed dollars 675 million
in 1997 when it enjoyed a 43 per cent rise in gross income to dollars
100 million - will open its doors with three clients: Cellnet, Bausch &
Lomb and American Express, whose American Express Interactive brand will
use the shop.
The UK operation will be headed by Alistair Ross-Russell, a customer
loyalty specialist from the management consultant, Bain & Co, and an
executive creative director, Martin McDonald, the British-born former
creative director and vice-chairman at the Atlanta agency,
Other multi-national Bronner clients thought to be talking to the London
shop include Federal Express, General Motors and Johnson & Johnson.
Michael Bronner, the chairman of Bronner, and David Kenny, the chief
executive of the agency, have both been planning international expansion
for some time, and further hubs in Asia and Latin America are expected
by the end of next year.
Speculation last year that Bronner was about to be snapped up by Young &
Rubicam was dispelled when it received a cash injection from a venture
capitalist, Hellman & Friedman, which then went on to buy an estimated
20 per cent stake in Y&R.
However, an acquisition by a major holding company has not been ruled
out, and it is thought that WPP is among potential suitors.