Movers & Shakers: Bumble, El Pollo Loco, Playboy, Lowe’s and more

Clip art of diverse business professionals talking.

This week’s agency news, people on the move and brand buzz.

In the Pitch Room

IHOP put its creative account, previously held by Droga5, up for review.

Kohler named independent digital agency PMG as its agency of record.

Entrust selected independent agency KC Truth as its agency of record, handling global brand strategy, creative and media. 

Agency News

Horizon Media sold a minority stake in Singapore-based investment company Temasek for an undisclosed sum.  

WPP acquired a majority stake in design agency MadeThought and will fold it into AKQA Group.

Duncan Channon launched the Table, a proprietary analytics tool that gives clients data-driven insights on integrated campaign performance.

Ben Jankowski, former SVP of media and sponsorships at Mastercard, launched a media consultancy called Modern Media Solutions.

Creative SEO agency Rise at Seven opened an office in New York City.

Offbeat Media Group started its Virtual Clubhouse, which offers its fully remote team the opportunity to connect virtually for concerts, happy hours and other social gatherings.

Dept launched a proprietary marketing technology platform called Ada by Dept.

Brand Storytelling is offering a brand film certification, powered by ETSU Research Corporation, for recent graduates and industry professionals looking to better understand the intersection of business, brand and film.

On the Move

Taco Bell appointed Sean Tresvant as global chief brand officer.

Headspace named entertainment industry vet Morgan Selzer as chief content and studios officer.

Cheryl Gresham was selected as CMO of Verizon’s Visible.

Wunderman Thompson tapped Audrey Melofchik as chief executive officer of North America.

CoinDesk tapped Kim Greenberg as head of marketing for CoinDesk Indices.

UM promoted Stacey Stewart to the newly-created role of U.S. chief marketplace officer. 

Dentsu hired Brian Eden as executive creative director and Bridget Jewell as group director, social creative for 360i. It also hired Vasili Gavre as executive creative director and Jason Oke as EVP, business leadership for Dentsu Creative.

iProspect named Cristina Kimmel as its SVP, media effectiveness.

Mariano Jeger joined TBWA\Media Arts Lab as executive creative director.

Grey Group promoted John Patroulis to global creative chairman and president, creative business, and Javier Campopiano to worldwide chief creative officer. And Grey Group Global Health & Wellness selected Laura Potucek and Guy Mannshardt Bricio as group creative directors.

GroupM named Marie-Claire Barker global chief people officer.

Pereira O'Dell hired Julie Rutigliano and Felipe Fereira and promoted Anjali Rao and Rachel McEuen as creative directors in the east. It also hired Fernando Passos and Therese Jonsson as creative directors in the west. 

Karen Baker joined marketing agency Boathouse to help expand its Washington D.C. office.

Digital agency Goodway Group promoted Susan Kirksey to VP of media solutions and Amanda Martin to SVP of corporate development and strategic partnerships.

The Out of Home Advertising Association of America (OAAA) appointed Laura Colona to executive vice president, commercial marketing officer and Rick Robinson to chief creative officer-in-residence.

Jeff Fagel joined MadHive as chief marketing officer.

Habu, a data clean room software company, hired Alice Stratton and David Danziger as chief revenue officer and SVP strategic partnerships, respectively.

TwentyFirstCenturyBrand selected Sara Lezama as associate partner.

Allied Global Marketing, an integrated marketing agency, promoted Kelly Estrella to chief of marketing operations.

Foursquare hired Oren Teich as SVP of product, reporting to CEO Gary Little.

Stagwell Media Network appointed Jon Schaaf to global chief investment officer, Shannon Pruitt to global chief content officer and Rick Acampora to chief client officer.

Hill+Knowlton Strategies tapped Grant Toups as its first global chief technology officer.

Brand Buzz

Jack in the Box acquired Del Taco for $575 million. 

Bumble opened Bumble Brew, a cafe and wine bar in New York City’s Nolita neighborhood. The dating app also launched Bumble Shop, its first e-commerce store featuring customer apparel. 

El Pollo Loco launched its first online merch store, Loco Gifts and Gear. And Playboy launched luxury lifestyle brand BigBunny.

Pepsi released Pepsi Mic Drop, its first NFT collection. 

Lowe’s is selling customizable gingerbread house kits for the holiday season.

Blue Moon released the Vax Card-igan, a holiday sweater with a transparent pocket to display your vaccine card.

Casetify partnered with Olivia Rodrigo for the launch of her capsule collection, Hardened Hearts, and Casetify's first OOH campaign in the U.S.

New Balance recruited sports agent Rich Paul to launch a shoe and apparel collection.

Bubly sparkling water and Michael Bublé released merry berry bublé, a limited-edition holiday flavor celebrating the 10-year anniversary of the singer’s holiday album, Christmas.

Hotels.com is challenging people to spend the night in it's Not-So-Silent Night Suite, a hotel suite that will play holiday music for 24 hours straight. The room also includes a light-up dance floor, karaoke machine, Santa DJ and ornament disco ball. A winner and  a personalised wake-up call from Lance Bass, a $500 room service credit and $1,000 travel stipend. If the person survives, they will receive 25 free hotel rooms. 

Omaha Steaks released its first parody song, “Deck the Steaks.”

Chocolate maker Tcho replaced its milk chocolate bars with plant-based dairy alternatives.

For Good

C+R Research, Initiative, Kantar, Levi and Skim pledged more than $140,000 to ARF Workforce Initiative for Diversity and Excellence (WIDE)’s scholarship program.

Booking.com added new Travel Proud and Work-Friendly badges.Travel Proud indicates which properties have gone through its Proud Hospitality program training and are committed to offering more inclusive and welcoming housing. The Work-Friendly badge shows which properties have amenities that allow travelers to work with ease.

Fransesca’s will feature products from the winners of its incubator program, FranFINDS, both online and in-stores for the holidays. 

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