Grey Global Group
Grey Group is a global advertising and marketing agency with headquarters in New York City, and 432 offices in 96 countries, operating in 154 cities. It is organized into four geographical units: North America; Europe, Middle East & Africa, Asia-Pacific and Latin America.
|Founded||1917(as Grey Studios)|
Arthur C. Fatt
|Michael Houston, Worldwide CEO James R. Heekin III, Executive Chairman|
|Services||Brand management, marketing strategy, creative development, direct marketing, public relations, public affairs, digital marketing, production|
|Revenue||1.307 billion USD (2003)|
Number of employees
|Subsidiaries||Grey, G2, GHG, GCI Group, MediaCom Worldwide, Alliance, G WHIZ, WING, Grey EMEA, ArcTouch|
As a unit of communications conglomerate WPP Group, Grey Global Group operates branded independent business units in many communications disciplines, including advertising, direct marketing, public relations, public affairs, brand development, customer relationship management, sales promotion, and interactive marketing, through its subsidiaries: Grey, G2, GHG, GCI Group, MediaCom Worldwide, Alliance, G WHIZ, and WING.
The company has won 10 Cannes Lions, an Addy, a Clio and an Emmy Award. Grey Group's European network, Grey EMEA, won 26 Euro EFFIE awards, and is the five-time Euro EFFIE Agency Network of the Year, in the four consecutive years of 2005–2008 and again in 2012.
Founded in 1917 by Lawrence Valenstein and Arthur C. Fatt, Grey Global Group began as a direct marketing company named Grey Studios, reflecting the color of the wall of its original quarters, changing to Grey Advertising in 1925.
In 1956, Grey acquired its first major client, Procter & Gamble. In 1961, billings reached $59 million and in the same year, Herbert D. Strauss was named president and the firm expanded domestically and internationally. In 1961, the firm opened an office in Los Angeles, and in 1962 the firm opened an office in London and in 1963 in Japan. In 1964, billings reached $100 million.
In 1965, the firm went public, trading on the Nasdaq exchange, and the firm expanded into the use of psychographics (the analysis of consumer lifestyles). In 1966, Grey became one of the top 10 agencies in the U.S.
Through the 1960s and 1970s, Grey continued to acquire major accounts, and grew into related communication fields. In 1970, Meyer became CEO and would remain in that position for 36 years.
In 2000, Grey Advertising became Grey Global Group. On March 7, 2005, WPP Group beat out Havas in a race to acquire Grey Global, the seventh-largest advertising agency at the time, for approximately $1.3 billion USD.
In late 2005, James R. Heekin III became CEO of Grey Worldwide, Grey Global Group's traditional advertising agency. On January 1, 2007, he became Chairman and CEO of Grey Group, the renamed agency holding company. He reports to Martin Sorrell, CEO of WPP Group.
In 2016, Grey acquired ArcTouch, a mobile design and development studio, which it operates as a subsidiary.
In 2010, Grey was listed on Fast Company's "50 Most Innovative Companies". In 2010, it was added to Advertising Age's "Agency A-List". In 2006, Grey was awarded 12 "Spots of the Week" by Ad Age, which placed it second-highest overall.
In 2016, Grey for Good, Grey Group's philanthropic communications division, created a hoax app that claimed to use crowdsourcing to help the refugee crisis in the Mediterranean Sea. After it was debunked by developers, the Apple Store pulled the app on the same day it was awarded a Bronze Lion at the Cannes Lions festival.
Awards and nominations
|2017||Diversity in Media Awards||Media Company of the Year||Valenstein & Fatt (Grey London)||Nominated|
In popular culture
- In the AMC series Mad Men, Duck Phillips joins Grey Advertising after being dumped by Sterling Cooper. The agency is frequently referenced as a chief competitor of Sterling Cooper throughout the series.
- In episode three of the 2010 series of BBC Three's Young, Dumb and Living Off Mum, the young adults spend a day at Grey Advertising working on a mock sexual health campaign.
- Lana Del Rey was born Elizabeth Woolridge Grant in New York City on June 21, 1985, to former Grey Group copywriter turned entrepreneur, Rob Grant, and former Grey account executive, Pat Grant.
- Charlie Watts (drummer of the Rolling Stones) was an employee of Grey London advertising agency in the beginning of the sixties, as assistant art director.
- "One of Cincinnati's largest branding firms merges with N.Y. ad giant Grey Group". www.bizjournals.com. Retrieved 2018-06-18.
- "Nirvik Singh appointed Chairman & CEO of Grey Group Asia Pacific" (Press release). WPP. 2008-12-15. Retrieved 2009-01-05.
- "Grey Company Profile". WPP. Retrieved 5 January 2009.
- "Grey Global Group appoints James R. Heekin III Chairman and CEO" (Press release). WPP. 2006-12-12. Retrieved 2009-01-05.
- "Grey EMEA named Agency Network of the Year" (Press release). WPP. 2008-09-17. Retrieved 2009-01-05.
- "Grey EMEA scoops Agency of the Year Award" (Press release). EACA Euro Effies. 2012. Retrieved 2013-04-04.
- Advertising Age: "Grey Advertising Agency (Grey Advertising; Grey Worldwide)" September 15, 2003
- New York Times: "Herbert Strauss, Ad Official Dies March 18, 1973
- New York Times: "LAWRENCE VALENSTEIN DIES AT 83; FOUNDER OF GREY ADVERTISING" by Suzanne Daley September 12, 1982
- New York Times: "Arthur Fatt, 94, Advertising Co-Founder" by Joseph B. Treaster January 16, 1999
- Elliott, Stuart (2006-12-12). "After 36 Years at Grey, Time for Life No. 2". The New York Times. Retrieved 2008-10-06.
- "Grey Global Moves Into LEED-CS-Hopeful Toy Building at 200 Fifth Avenue". gbnyc. 2009-11-02. Archived from the original on November 6, 2009. Retrieved 2009-11-02.
- Group, Grey. "Grey Group Acquires Mobile Experiences Studio ArcTouch". www.prnewswire.com. Retrieved 2017-01-20.
- "Grey London Changes Name to Valenstein & Fatt in Diversity Drive". Retrieved 2017-04-25.
- "On 100th anniversary, Grey Group appoints Michael Houston worldwide CEO". Retrieved 2017-11-13.
- Hern, Alex (2016-06-21). "Refugee rescue app pulled from App Store after it is outed as fake". the Guardian. Retrieved 2016-06-22.
- "Apple Pulled This App From iTunes the Same Day It Won a Lion at Cannes". AdWeek. Retrieved 2016-06-22.