WASHINGTON: Former Penn Schoen Berland CEO Jay Leveton is joining the Stagwell Group, the investment firm founded by Mark Penn in June, as a partner.
Leveton said his agency experience could give the Stagwell Group an edge, citing "a great perspective of which agencies have the capabilities to be successful in the marketplace."
He also called Penn a longtime mentor and said, "This was a natural opportunity to work together."
Last month, Penn Schoen Berland promoted Curtis Freet to CEO for corporate and political business and Jon Penn to chief executive for its media and entertainment business. Longtime CFO Michael Pettingill was named CFO and COO. Both Freet, who is working primarily from New York and Washington, DC, and Los Angeles-based Penn are reporting to Burson-Marsteller worldwide chair and CEO Donald Baer.
Leveton, who exited Penn Schoen Berland in mid-July, was named its interim CEO in October 2012. He also continued to serve as a worldwide EVP at Burson.
Previously, Leveton was CEO of Proof Integrated Communications and MD of Penn Schoen Berland in New York, according to his LinkedIn account.
Penn said in mid-July that he was launching the Stagwell Group, with plans to depart his role as Microsoft’s chief insights officer in September. Microsoft is not planning to replace him.
He said at the time that Stagwell will "look for investments that are digital first, meet high standards of creativity, and believe in being evidence-based and data-oriented."
"We are going to have a balance between PR, research, advertising, and digital media pros on board," Penn said last month.