The view, from the CEO suite, of the modern holding company

Donaton, Scott
March 1999
Advertising Age;3/22/1999, Vol. 70 Issue 12, p28
Trade Publication
This article focuses on modern holding companies. Today a handful of massive holding companies rule a marketing landscape picked clean of all but a handful of independents. The modern agency holding companies still resolve conflicts and provide a roof over a range of communications companies. But their role is also expanding. On the media front, they seek to leverage the combined clout of their companies for better buying efficiencies. Now, an unconventional decision by a major marketer has raised questions about what a holding company is or should be. When Mercedes-Benz of North America fired Lowe & Partners/SMS, the automaker surprised that it would hire a holding company rather than an agency.


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