JeffreyGroup to separate US-focused operations

JeffreyGroup will spin off its US Hispanic operations early next month to launch an integrated communications and advertising agency.

MIAMI: JeffreyGroup will spin off its US Hispanic operations early next month to launch an integrated communications and advertising agency.

“JeffreyGroup will be focused 100% on Latin America, which is essentially where we were for the first 11 years of our 20-year existence,” said Jeffrey Sharlach, chairman and CEO of JeffreyGroup. “Increasingly, we see client programs cross over into all these different disciplines; we think this will enable us, as we staff this new agency, to provide a much broader range of solutions.”

The company will reveal the new firm's specific objectives when it launches, he added. Both firms will be part of Intercom Americas, the parent of JeffreyGroup. It did not disclose the new firm's name.

Mike Valdés-Fauli, who will be CEO of the new agency, launched JeffreyGroup's US Hispanic practice when he joined the firm in 2004. He currently serves as JeffreyGroup's president.

Brian Burlingame, JeffreyGroup's COO, will continue to manage the day-to-day operations of JeffreyGroup. Last week, the agency appointed Teresa Rice, former MD at IGC and Burson-Marsteller Latin America, as MD of JeffreyGroup Miami. As of January, she will lead the firm's US management team.

Valdés-Fauli oversees all of the US Hispanic and Latin American clients. In January, Rice will take over his responsibilities for the Latin American side of the business.

Agency operations in Latin America, including the firm's wholly owned offices in Mexico City, São Paulo, Rio de Janeiro, and Buenos Aires, will not be affected by the spin-off, nor will JeffreyGroup Latin America teams in the Miami and New York offices. The agency opened its Rio de Janeiro office last year.

JeffreyGroup clients in Latin America include Amazon, American Airlines, Bayer, Facebook, Hilton, Johnson & Johnson, MasterCard, Mead Johnson, Nestlé, Spotify, and Xerox. 

Sharlach said the agency has “discussed this launch with our existing clients, and they have been very supportive and encouraging.”

The firm does not have other spin-offs planned, he added.

JeffreyGroup reported 2012 global revenue of $8.4 million, including US revenue of $5.1 million. The company attributed its growth party to a rising middle class in its two largest markets: Brazil and Mexico.

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