OMD Unveils Move to Become Full Media Network

04 March 2002

Omnicom Group-owned broadcast buying network OMD USA is to undergo a major reorganisation into a fully integrated media shop, it was revealed last week.

Until now, the two-year-old agency had been restricted to broadcast buying for Omnicom siblings DDB, BBDO and TBWA. However, under the new scheme it will take on all media planning and buying duties.

Effective April 1, the restructuring will see some 850 staffers from the three affiliated agencies become employees of OMD, which will be based in three hubs - New York (to be headed by BBDO's US media director Mike Drake), Los Angeles (under TBWA's chief media officer Monica Karo) and Chicago (for which a boss is yet to be announced).

The media network will also set up a number of new units, including OMD Connect (to ally with small and medium-sized ad shops for buying duties), OMD Concepts (to handle large media owners and entertainment marketing) and a multicultural marketing arm.

Among senior staff, managing partner Don Rank will take on radio buying as well as broadcast, Page Thompson will join the network as chief strategy officer from DDB, and Steve Grubbs, OMD's American ceo, will depart to a new position within Omnicom.

The reorganisation will make OMD the third largest US media shop with $8 billion in billings, lagging Initiative Media North America ($12bn) and MindShare ($8bn).

Data sourced from: (USA); additional content by WARC staff