Last year, executives at the ad firm D'Arcy Masius Benton & Bowles saw the potential for growth in Los Angeles. So they moved the agency's West Coast headquarters to new offices on the 10th floor of a Wilshire Boulevard high-rise.
Its a good thing the 11th floor was empty, too.
The agency, which landed the $29-million NBC network advertising account last week, has already started to fill up the building's 11th floor. After all, it also picked up the $60-million Paramount Pictures business in the past year, not to mention the $20-million Denny's account. In one year, its billings have swelled to $160 million from just $42 million.
"Now," said James D. Helin, managing director of the office, "we have options on the 12th floor."
Over the past year, the company has added more than 30 employees to its Los Angeles payroll, and another dozen or so are expected with the addition of the NBC account. At a time when many Los Angeles ad agencies are trimming staff, it is one of the few ad shops on the grow.
But much of its growth has been at the cost of the Los Angeles office of a rival agency, AC&R/CCL Advertising, which formerly held both the NBC and Paramount accounts. The two firms both specialize in entertainment advertising and marketing so they naturally vie for the same clients. 'I feel for them," said Helin, "but we're not overtly going after their business."