Draftfcb goes back to the future with FCB name change

When Carter Murray became Draftfcb’s new global CEO last September, one of his stated missions was to rebrand the agency to reflect its fully integrated nature.

Mission accomplished.  On March 10, the formal announcement decarled the new name would be FCB (FooteCone & Belding) – with one of the smartest twists in marketing.

The Interpublic Group-owned global agency has been localized by adding the market’s name to “FCB,” a la FCB Chicago, FCB Shanghai, FCB Paris.

As Murray says, “We are intrinsically local and the name change celebrates local creartivity and local spirit.” 

The exceptions are a rare case of where a creative leader’s name will be used, hence FCB Garfinkle, for new New York-based CEO Lee Garfinkle.  Or an agency with specific expertise takes on that name, e.g., FCB Health.

FCB’s CEO Carter MurrayNow, said Murray, “The entities have united, they have one seamless offering. The brand name is simplified and reflects the agency’s focus, identify and direction as an integrated company.”

The colorful new identity, designed by FCB International CCO Luis Silva Dias, loosely depicts the colors of flags in FCB’s 90 operating countries and incorporates local elements that visually follow a diagonal cut in FCB’s “B.”

“I believe it’s a really great time for FCB. We have terrific talent and some early momentum. There’s a lot of potential here and I’m excited for our future,” Murray said.

Sidebar: Foote, Cone & Belding was started in 1943 as a successor to one of the first advertising agencies, Lord & Thomas, founded in 1873  Emerson Foote was based in New York, Fairfax Cone in Chicago headquarters and Don Belding in LA.  One of its biggest and most iconic accounts was Lucky Strike cigarettes. 

Frederick Wakeman, aformer account executive who had worked on Lucky Strike, wrote the 1947 book, “The Hucksters,” the original “Mad Men,” which was made into a hit movie.   It starred Clark Gable (think Don Draper), Ava Gardner, and Sydney Greenstreet as George Washington Hill, the infamous owner of Lucky Strike.