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January 13th, 2014

Critical Mass continues investment in talent with new executive leadership for Chicago and Los Angeles offices

Critical Mass promotes Amanda Levy to General Manager, Adds Suzanne Michaels as Executive Creative Director and Lisa Penelton as VP of Marketing Science

Critical Mass, a global digital agency, continues its investment in global growth and talent with new leadership across its Chicago and Los Angeles offices. Beginning today, Amanda Levy steps up to General Manager leading business and operations across Chicago and Los Angeles, while continuing her role as SVP and client partner for Nissan and Infiniti North America. Joining Amanda as regional leaders are Suzanne Michaels who joins as Executive Creative Director and Lisa Penelton as VP of Marketing Science.

Dianne Wilkins, CEO of Critical Mass, explained, “The addition of Amanda, Suzanne, and Lisa as leaders across Chicago and Los Angeles, gives us the experience and depth we need to develop our agency talent and serve our clients on their quest to create cumulative customer experiences.”

Amanda has been at Critical Mass for seven years, as a lead for some of the agency’s largest clients. With experience on the client and agency sides, Amanda brings a true understanding of how agencies can be the most effective client partner. Prior to Critical Mass, Amanda led OMD West and worked at Dell, where she led online marketing, and was a client of Critical Mass.

Suzanne is a seasoned creative leader with nearly 20 years of experience leading teams concepting and executing brand programs and ideas. As SVP and Executive Creative Director, Suzanne Michaels will oversee the creative departments in Chicago and LA, driving new thinking and creative excellence across all clients. Suzanne will report into Amanda and recently appointed CCO Conor Brady, and join the agency executive team and global creative council. Prior to joining Critical Mass, Suzanne was as DigitasLBi leading creative for TeamSprint and contributing to several major competitive pitch wins.

Suzanne explained the move, “Agencies everywhere are at a precipice, thinking about who they are and what they want to be. With its expertise in business strategy, user experience and design, Critical Mass is poised to fill a very compelling white space. We can be the partner who helps brands do more than just advertise to people, and become a chosen part of their lives through software, products, and experiences.

Lisa Penelton joins as VP of Marketing Science, overseeing clients across four offices. Lisa’s a seasoned veteran in the data science and marketing analytics field with expertise in driving long-term growth and multi-channel efficiency. She joins Critical Mass from Razorfish where she was Group Director of Consumer Insights, based in Chicago. Previously, Lisa built the analytics practice at DraftFCB and worked on the client side at United Way of America.

Critical Mass continues its investment in global growth and creative excellence. The digital agency recently announced two new global executives, Conor Brady and Chris Hayes, who joined in newly created roles of Chief Creative Officer and Chief Marketing Officer. Additionally, Critical Mass also announced the merger of its London operations with Agency Republic, effective January 18, 2014.

January 6th, 2014

With Addition of New Executive Leaders and Merger of London Operations, Critical Mass is Poised for More Global Growth

Critical Mass adds two global leaders, with Conor Brady as CCO and Chris Hayes as CMO, and merges its London operations with Agency Republic

NEW YORK and LONDON – January 6, 2014 – Critical Mass, a global digital agency, is bolstering its global network with the addition of two new executive leaders and merging its London-based operations with renowned digital creative pioneer Agency Republic.

Digital agency leaders Conor Brady and Chris Hayes join from Brooklyn-based Huge as CCO and CMO respectively. Both roles are new for the agency, and both executives will report directly to CEO Dianne Wilkins. With over three decades of combined experience in digital marketing and advertising, Conor and Chris bring a track record of creating inspired and effective brand experiences and winning new business.

In addition, to continue growing its global network and capabilities in key markets, Critical Mass is merging its UK operations with Agency Republic, a pioneering London-based digital agency. Founded in 2001, Agency Republic works with top-tier global brands and has been named Digital Agency of the Year by Campaign and Marketing magazines four times.

Dianne Wilkins, CEO of Critical Mass, explained, “It takes bold moves to be a leader in today’s marketing agency world. With our new global executives and expanded UK operations, Critical Mass is doubling down on our ability to create smart, customer-centered brand experiences around the world. Today’s news shows our substantial commitment to further strengthening our capabilities and talent available to our global clients.”

Following the merger, Agency Republic’s Matt Kwiecinski and Alistair Campbell will lead the combined UK team as Managing Director and Executive Creative Director respectively. Additionally, Matt joins the executive leadership team at Critical Mass and Alistair joins the newly created Creative Council, led by Brady. Susanne Jones, former Managing Director of Critical Mass London, moves into a new strategic role as SVP Client Partner for one of the agency’s largest global clients.

December 23rd, 2013

Critical Mass Named Digital Agency of Record for South African Tourism UK

LONDON, England – 20 DECEMBER 2013 – Following a competitive pitch process and public tender, Critical Mass, an Omnicom global digital marketing agency, has been named lead digital agency for South African Tourism in the UK. For the new assignment, Critical Mass will lead digital creative strategy, design and development for the brand as it looks to attract more UK visitors to South Africa.

“From the start, Critical Mass impressed us with its smart thinking, creative concepts and digital savvy, and passion for our brand,” commented Juan Herrada, UK Marketing & Communications Manager, South African Tourism. “What stood out for us most was that Critical Mass wasn’t afraid to point out the challenges facing our brand for attracting long-haul tourists. Critical Mass proved its understanding by developing big brand ideas that resonated strongly with our culture and values.”

Critical Mass was awarded the assignment in October 2013 and will begin work immediately. New campaigns and digital experiences are expected to break early 2014 in the UK market. Critical Mass is a 700+ person global digital marketing agency, part of Omnicom Group, with 8 full-service offices in North America, Europe and Latin America. In addition to South Africa Tourism, Critical Mass’ Covent Garden-based office serves as the agency’s European headquarters, working with global and regional clients such as Goodyear Dunlop, HP and Citi.

“Critical Mass has been known for large-scale, long-term relationships with global corporations and South African Tourism adds a key local market client to build out our roster in the UK.” Said Dianne Wilkins, CEO of Critical Mass. “At the heart of the agency across every market, we’re passionate explorers, entrepreneurs, and travelers. It’s wonderful to get the opportunity to combine our personal passions into client inspiration as the new lead digital agency for South African Tourism.”

About Critical Mass
Critical Mass (, an Omnicom digital marketing agency, helps the world’s leading companies use digital media to create extraordinary experiences—experiences that bring together creative thinking, smart ideas and emerging technologies to drive our clients’ businesses. Consistently recognized as a leading interactive agency, Critical Mass operates globally from eight full-service offices in North America, Europe and Latin America.

December 9th, 2013

Critical Mass adds Jaime Escobar, General Manager of Latin American Operations, to Executive Team

Critical Mass has named Jaime Escobar, operations director of The Hangar and general manager of the recently announced Critical Mass LatAm, to its executive team. As part of the executive leadership team, Jaime will influence Critical Mass’ strategic growth plan and operations, including expansion of full-service agency services in the region and digital production services for marketers and agencies.

Dianne Wilkins, CEO of Critical Mass, commented, “Under Jaime’s management, The Hangar Interactive has grown into a hotspot for Latin American digital talent and high-quality production, while establishing a new hub for Critical Mass to service clients in the region. As part of the Critical Mass executive team, we will continue to invest in Jaime’s efforts to become one of the top digital agency and production partners in the region and bring our clients the best ideas and interactive customer experiences from around the globe.”

In the five years since The Hangar Interactive was established, the digital shop has found its niche as an interactive agency that specializes in smart and extraordinary digital execution. Under Jaime’s leadership over the past three years, The Hangar Interactive has grown revenue by 30 percent annually and built specialty services, including marketing science support, mobile app development and illustration for clients such as Nissan, Citi and agencies such as RAPP.

Jaime has helped The Hangar Interactive prioritize new ideas and talent development by building out an innovation center and adding strong regional industry leaders. In 2013, The Hangar established The Hangar Labs (, an initiative to promote innovation through experimentation with emerging technologies. Since The Hangar Labs launched, team members have proposed ideas and gotten support and tools to create prototypes with new technologies including Leap Motion, facial recognition software and digital gaming.

In the past year, The Hangar has also brought on Miguel Alvarez as Director of Technology and Melania Madriz as Manager of Human Resources. Both Miguel and Melania share their experience growing and leading in a fast-paced digital production environment. Formerly of WPP’s POSSIBLE, Miguel has taken his expertise in web technologies for digital agencies to now commanding a multi-disciplinary team across in backend, front end and mobile development, content entry, and quality assurance. Melania joined from Publicis’ Bosz Digital as an HR leader during the time the company expanded from 30 to 300 employees.

Jaime Escobar added, “In the past five years working with Critical Mass and top marketers, we’ve proven that we always deliver top-quality digital experiences used by millions of people around the world. Building on that experience, we aspire to be the #1 partner for extraordinary digital craftsmanship that helps the world’s top marketers achieve efficiencies without compromising on customer experience.”

December 5th, 2013

Critical Mass Named Digital Agency of Record for Guardsman, a division of Valspar

Valspar Corporation has named Critical Mass to its roster as the new digital agency of record for its Guardsman professional furniture care division. Critical Mass, an Omnicom global digital marketing agency, will begin work immediately, developing a new website and digital marketing campaign that will go live in early 2014.

Stuart Graff, Division Vice President of Guardsman commented, “From the start of the pitch process, Critical Mass showed a clear understanding of our business and what motivates our customers in furniture ownership and care. The team impressed us with a strong creative vision that tells our brand story across all digital platforms and experiences. We look forward to working with Critical Mass to help us build a more emotional connection with our current and potential customers.”

Critical Mass is a 700+ person digital marketing agency that operates globally across 8 full-service offices in North America, Europe and Latin America. The new assignment for Valspar Corporation’s Guardsman brand will be led from the agency’s Chicago office that works with Greater Miami Convention and Visitor’s Bureau, HP, Moen and United Airlines.