Cone: Agency Business Report 2008

President Jens Bang Bang is "cautiously optimistic," noting Q1 2008 has been "excellent." Organic growth continues, and "new business is still good," he says.

Outlook
President Jens Bang Bang is "cautiously optimistic," noting Q1 2008 has been "excellent." Organic growth continues, and "new business is still good," he says.

"We're well positioned with strength in brand marketing and cause marketing," adds Bang. "We see corporate responsibility as a significant growth area."

Cone produced a number of award-nominated cause campaigns in 2007, including the American Heart Association's Start! program launch. Other highlights include the "Cone Cause Evolution and Environmental Survey," and a project with Duke University linking behavior research and cause branding

Staff

Headcount is 100, up 22 from 2006 with turnover of 20%. Senior hires include Ken Freitas, VP, cause branding; Pete Buhler, creative director; and Mike Hollywood, who replaced Brian Reich as new media director. Bill Fleishman, formerly EVP brand marketing, was promoted to MD. He will continue to head the brand marketing group.

Regional performance
Nestle, Game Crazy, Starbucks, and T-Mobile business prompted outpost office openings in both Los Angeles and Seattle last summer.

Bang says the agency is "examining the prospect of evolving [those] into full-blown offices."

Practice areas

Four: brand marketing, cause branding, CSR, and crisis prevention and management. All grew, with brand marketing seeing the biggest percentage rise.

Accounts
Key account wins in 2007 included Timberland, American Cancer Society, City Year, Darden Restaurants, Ben & Jerry's, State Farm, the NHL, Campbell's, and Friendly's. No accounts were lost.

Financial performance
Revenue was less than $50 million, and Cone experienced "significant revenue and profit growth in the double digits." Organic growth was key to success. Double-digit growth is also expected in 2008.

Key facts
Principals:
Jens Bang, president

Ownership:
Diversified Agency Services, a division of The Omnicom Group

Offices:
One, in Boston (with outposts in Seattle and Los Angeles)

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