NEW YORK: Blanc %26 Otus has merged operations with Atlanta-based SocketPR. Both firms were acquired by Hill %26 Knowlton in 2000. SocketPR and its 20 staffers will assume the Blanc %26 Otus branding, boosting the latter's presence to Atlanta, as well as Austin, TX.
Blanc & Otus already has offices in Washington, DC, San Francisco, and Boston.
The co-presidents of Socket-PR, Beverly McDonald and Peter Baron, will become co-general managers of the Atlanta office. Craig Parks will continue to lead the Austin office.
"The majority of our clients in the South have always had a need for a strong West Coast presence, Baron said. He added that Atlanta's technology market is growing through the security and optical sectors.
Blanc & Otus' marketing of its brand in the new regions will be carried out through breakfast seminars designed to help clients target key technology executives within certain corporations.
Greg Spector, CEO of B&O, said the move would create "one of the largest tech agencies in the country."
Meanwhile, H&K has promoted Michael Gordon to technology practice director in New York. Gordon, who joined in April 2001, was formerly senior managing director.