2006 Agency Business Report: Carmichael Lynch Spong

Carmichael Lynch Spong continues to work hard to attract big brand-name clients that shore up its specialism in the home-and-garden sector.

Carmichael Lynch Spong continues to work hard to attract big brand-name clients that shore up its specialism in the home-and-garden sector.

New wins like Benjamin Moore and Clorox not only bolster this, but also proved that to many clients (respectively, coming from New Jersey and California), geography is less important as the right expertise.

The launch of a marketing-to-women practice was backed by ample resources, and CEO Spong says it's paying off in spades.

On the cards for 2006 is geographic expansion. In the US, a West Coast office would attract more of the household companies based there, and so Spong expects a presence, by acquisition or organically, in the next 12-15 months.

Globally, CLS finds its clients increasingly demand overseas capabilities, and Spong expects to tap into the resources IPG has to offer, as well as explore his own options.

"We continue to outpace the industry on growth," says Spong.

Name of parent division/company (enter both where applicable)
Interpublic Group of Companies

Name of global CEO and US CEO (or most senior equivalent)
Douglas K. Spong

What is your current headcount, and how has it changed from this time last year?
Current count 52 ? from 49 previous year

What was the percentage of staff turnover?
28%

Did you make any senior hires in 2005 (VP and higher)?
Partners; Jill Schmidt, Julie Batliner and John Tieszen

What senior staff have departed the firm?
Kendra Calhoun, partner

How many offices do you have globally?
Four
North America
Minneapolis, New York, Chicago and Denver
Central America/Caribbean

How many practice areas do you have?
Nine

Which ones are new?
None

Of those, which ones are part of the core strategy of the agency?

Brand Marketing, Home and Garden, Food and Beverage, and Media Relations

Which practice areas have been phased out in the past year?
None

What practice areas showed the most growth?
Home and Garden

What key account wins did you have in 2005? Benjamin Moore, Clorox, Jack Link's, K Hovnanian Homes, Lifetouch, PETCO, Radisson Hotels

What key accounts did you lose in 2005?
Pulte Homes, White Wave

What proportion of your clients are on a retainer?
20%

Has this changed over the past year?
No

Did you experience top-line or bottom-line growth in the past year?
Yes. Both

How did your performance, in terms of revenue and growth, meet expectations you had for the year?

Met expectations

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