The pair has teamed up with Lisa Lee, a former Ogilvy & Mather director, to launch Keevill Lee Kershaw.
Positioned as a DM hotshop, the agency will open its doors next week.
Keevill and Kershaw will be creative directors of the new agency with Lee as the managing director.
The agency has no major retained clients, but the three directors will bring their current projects into the agency as they pitch for new business.
Since leaving Craik Jones, where they won awards for work on Land Rover, Boots No 7 and Bells Whisky, Keevill and Kershaw have been freelancing for direct and ad agencies including Grey London. Lee, a former creative director of Ogilvy Hong Kong and the managing director of Ogilvy Sydney, has most recently worked as a consultant for Y&R/Wunderman on global accounts including Philips and Citibank.
Lee said the agency will establish partnerships with advertising, media and data planning companies to complete its service. "We'd love to win awards, but we get as much, if not more, satisfaction from coming up with a big idea that builds a client's brand and its business," she said.
The agency founders believe there is room for a direct marketing start-up now that the likes of Archibald Ingall Stretton and Partners Andrews Aldridge are maturing.
Keevill said: "If we had a strapline, it would be 'The Northern Charm School'. Because we're from Lancashire and Yorkshire, we can't help being straight with clients."