Possible : advertising & marketing assignments

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Possible was one of the world's newer major digital marketing networks, launched in 2011 by WPP from the combination of several separately branded units already owned by the group. These included Schematic and Bridge Worldwide in the US, Blue Interactive of Singapore and Quasar Media in India. The company made its debut with 18 offices in the US, Asia and the UK. Zaaz was transferred into the network in early 2012 (from Wunderman), with its co-founder Shane Atchison appointed as Possible's new CEO. In 2015, Atchison was also named global lead within WPP for the Microsoft account. Another key Possible client is P&G, already a longtime sustomer for predecessor agency Bridge Worldwide. Further outposts have been established through acquisition, including the former Swift digital agency in Portland and mobile app developer Double Encore. German independent Conrad Caine was acquired in early 2016. By the beginning of 2017, there were 20 offices worldwide, all operating under the uniform Possible name. Later that year the group established its own specialised ecommerce division following the acquisition of Marketing Ignition, which develops marketing campaigns for retail giant Amazon. It now operates as Possible Commerce. Previously a standalone unit within WPP, the Possible network was realigned in 2017 as a division of Wunderman, although it retains a separate identity. That led to the resignation of CEO Atchison. Martha Hiefield became CEO, Possible Americas, with Josh Schmiesing as head of the Microsoft account. Atchison returned to the fold around a year later to lead the newly created WundermanThompson North America entity. Ad Age estimated global revenues of $263m for 2017. During 2019, further steps were taken to absorb Possible into Wunderman Thompson, with the merger of its Seattle HQ with the local outposts of both Wunderman and Cole & Weber to create Wunderman Thompson Seattle. Possible's UK offices were absorbed into Wunderman Thompson's Mirum digital division soon afterwards.

Capsule checked 30th December 2018

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Recent stories from Adbrands Weekly Update:

Adbrands Daily Update 13th Mar 2019: The Possible brand may heading inexorably for the dustbin of history, following further moves by WPP to consolidate agency assets. Possible's Seattle HQ is merging with Wunderman and the local creative agency Cole & Weber to create Wunderman Thompson Seattle. The Possible name will be retained for the time being for certain key clients, but it is as yet unclear whether staffing levels will be cut. Possible's New York-based managing director Joe Crump was at the same time named to the same role at Wunderman Thompson New York.

Adbrands Weekly Update 6th Jul 2017: WPP appears to be looking at other ways to streamline operations following the merger of MEC and Maxus to create a still as yet unnamed new media network. The WSJ reports today that the group's Possible digital network is set to be absorbed into Wunderman. WPP declined to comment; the WSJ attributes the report to "people familiar with the matter".

Adbrands Weekly Update 11th May 2017: WPP is also positioning itself to get much closer to Amazon. Though Amazon's advertising revenues are still small compared to Google and Facebook, they are growing rapidly, and the ecommerce giant also has unrivalled knowledge about individual consumer shopping habits. As a result, WPP's Possible digital network this week acquired Marketplace Ignition, a marketing consultancy that works with retailers and brands to increase their business on Amazon. This will now form the core of new specialist division Possible Commerce. Possible Americas president Jason Burby told The Drum "Fifty percent of product searches now start on Amazon. Not Google, as everyone expects - of course some still happen there - but on Amazon. Seventy-seven percent of every dollar right now spent in digital advertising is at Google or Facebook. We know that. It's a two horse race, but we're seeing Amazon emerging as that third horse." Estimates for Amazon's ad revenues this year are around $1bn, but some analysts forecast in excess of $20bn by 2020.

Adbrands Weekly Update 28th Jan 2016: WPP extended the footprint of its digital network Possible with the acquisition of a majority stake in German agency Conrad Caine. Headquartered in Munich, the business also has offices in Brazil and Argentina. Clients include Siemens, Deutsche Bank, Allianz, and Goodyear Dunlop. Revenues were €8.5m in 2014. The deal gives Possible its first outposts in both Germany and Argentina. Conrad Caine's eponymous founder & CEO will continue to lead the agency in Germany.


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