Project Worldwide is a mid-sized marketing services group, best-known for its core unit George P Johnson, a specialist in trade shows, events and exhibitions, especially for auto and IT clients. It is for example IBM's sole global event marketing partner, responsible for the strategic planning, integration and management of the IT giant's presence at over 1,200 conventions, shows and exhibitions a year. GPJ's eponymous founder was in fact one of the organisers of America's first ever auto show in 1910, and by the 1950s was the main contractor for the country's two biggest motor shows. Two of its original cornerstone clients, GM and Ford, have moved on in the past few years, but GPJ still handles most of the world's other big auto manufacturers as well as a wide variety of clients from other sectors. Headquartered in Detroit, GPJ has an international network of 30 offices stretching across 13 other countries, mainly in Europe and Asia. The business is family owned, run by the founder's grandsons Robert Vallee Jr and Larry Vallee. They established parent entity Project Worldwide in 2010, and have steadily added a collection of other creative, digital and promotional marketing agencies to the portfolio. There are now 13 agencies under the Project umbrella including US ad agencies Partners & Napier, Argonaut and Motive; retail marketer Shoptology; content creation unit Spinifex and digital design shop Juxt. Another acquired agency, Pitch, was absorbed into Motive in 2019, becoming its LA office. Revenues are around $300m annually, of which GPJ contributes as much as 80%.
Capsule checked 16th January 2020
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Adbrands Weekly Update 7th Aug 2014: Project Worldwide, best known as the holding company for global event marketing giant George P Johnson, added another prize to its growing collection of secondary agencies. The latest feather in its cap is LA-based ad agency Pitch, current lead on Burger King's US creative account. No price was disclosed. Pitch joins a small roster of other agencies under the Project umbrella including Argonaut - who were responsible for Volkswagen's Super Bowl 2014 spot - and Partners & Napier. Also this week, Project announced the spin-out of part of the main George P Johnson business as a separate specialised agency under the banner of GPJ Sports Marketing. GPJ already handles a number of sports-related projects on behalf of clients such as Under Armour, Pepsi and Lexus.
Adbrands Weekly Update 6th Jun 2013: Project Worldwide, best known as the parent group for global exhibition and event marketer George P Johnson, added another string to its bow with the launch of new retail marketing agency Shoptology. It's Project's second launch this year, following San Francisco creative boutique Argonaut. The new agency is being run by Charlie Anderson, formerly North America CEO of Saatchi & Saatchi X, with Lipton Iced Tea as its first client.
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