Gibbs & Soell: Agency Business Report 2012

As the financial services and housing and construction markets continued to feel the economy's impact, Gibbs & Soell's US revenue fell 8.5%.

Principal: Luke Lambert, president and CEO
Ownership: Independent
Offices: New York; Chicago; Raleigh, NC; and Zurich, Switzerland
Revenue: Global: $14,705,882; US: $13,977,420
Headcount: Global: 95; US: 91

As the financial services and housing and construction markets continued to feel the economy's impact, Gibbs & Soell's US revenue fell 8.5%. Two key practice areas are professional services and building solutions.
 
“No surprise,” says CEO Luke Lambert. “We planned for that.” The firm brought in marcomms veteran Greg Sherry along with his team and clients in March to head its new standalone consumer practice, an initiative spearheaded by former CEO Cos Mallozzi, who held that role for 20 years.
 
The practice reaches into consumer lifestyle; technology; health, sports and fitness; and home and office products.
 
Consumer gains
“There is an end-use consumer component [in our practice areas] that our consumer practice can now touch,” explains Lambert. “We're really looking for cross fertilization with our consumer practice in 2012.”
 
Other key practice areas are advanced manufacturing and energy; agribusiness and food, the agency's largest sector; greentech and sustainability; and tech and general science.
 
In March 2012, Mallozzi, a 35-year veteran of the firm, retired. Lambert succeeded him while retaining the title of president, a post he has held since 2009. Jeff Altheide was promoted to EVP to oversee all growth strategies and business development. Other personnel changes include the departure of Dick Wolfe, VP of business development, and Roger Ardan, VP, professional services.
 
Organic growth includes Syngenta, which awarded PR for its seed-protection business to incumbent Gibbs & Soell, which has handled Syngenta's crop-protection business since 1971. In February 2012, the firm won the US business of Hafele America, HomeServe USA, and Rexel for its consumer division.
 
In 2011, the firm focused on establishing thought leadership from within its new greentech and sustainability practice, including publishing its second annual Sense & Sustainability Study in partnership with Harris Interactive. The year also marked Gibbs & Soell's 40th anniversary, which it celebrated by launching campaigns focused on giving back to the community.

Lambert emphasizes the firm's deep understanding of its clients' industries. “It allows us to know our clients better than anyone and apply a total integration of business communication strategies,” he explains. “It's a real differentiator for us.”

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