McCann Clubs CRM Units Under MRM Partners Worldwide Label

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McCann-Erickson WorldGroup has consolidated its customer relationship management and digital solutions business by combining its MRM Worldwide and Zentropy Partners units under one umbrella company.


Named MRM Partners Worldwide, the company will include the MRM agency network in 33 countries; Zentropy; and units that focus on custom publishing, customer knowledge, customer care, and online media planning and buying.


Concurrently, the shop will launch a new Enterprise Relationship Strategic Consultancy. Michael Tey, president of Zentropy since October, when McCann took it under its wing from parent Interpublic Group of Companies, will head this consultancy.


In a way, the formation of a holding entity for McCann's CRM properties reflects the pressures inflicted on the agency business by belt-tightening clients.


"It's a response to the marketplace and the way the consumer's changed," said Pam Maphis Larrick, New York-based president/CEO of MRM Partners Worldwide. "With the Net explosion, the consumer is never going to shop, buy or own in the same way again."


Larrick was elevated to her current position as part of the changes. She previously was president and chief operating officer at MRM Worldwide. Stan Rapp, chairman/CEO of MRM Worldwide, has been appointed chairman of MRM Partners Worldwide.


Both MRM Worldwide and Zentropy have been working closely since October. Besides boasting separate accounts, they currently share clients such as Johnson & Johnson, L'Oreal, Nestle and General Motors Corp.


Zentropy claims operating profitability, working on e-commerce and digital assignments for clients such as Unilever, Reebok and Ralston-Purina.


For 2000, the combined entity comprising both MRM Worldwide and Zentropy will post revenue of $215 million on capitalized billings of $1.44 billion.


Larrick said the formation of MRM Partners Worldwide is meant to take advantage of the core competencies of its constituents.


"MRM is really a marketing-based technology company, and Zentropy has really been a technology-based, marketing-driven company," Larrick said.


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