Red Cell Beirut monkeys around with a new name

Advertising agency Red Cell Beirut will cease to exist from 1 January next year and will instead be called SpiderMonkey, Campaign can reveal.

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By  Tim Addington Published  December 11, 2005

Advertising agency Red Cell Beirut will cease to exist from 1 January next year and will instead be called SpiderMonkey, Campaign can reveal. Joe Ayoub, CEO at the agency, said the new name was designed to “break industry conventions and to focus emphatically on its creative and strategic capabilities”. The rebranding comes after WPP owned Red Cell decided to downsize its international operations to concentrate on building its network in the key markets of Europe and America. Ayoub had previously slammed Red Cell’s decision to pull out of the partnership. “They [Red Cell] never showed real commitment to the Middle East,” he told Campaign earlier this year. “They didn’t care about it.” He said that several names were in the frame, but he decided to go with SpiderMonkey to make it stand out as a more daring and creatively-led company. “The spider monkey is highly agile, a very fast climber, and smart. We are a small agile agency that is climbing fast and winning a lot of new business, so we thought the name was appropriate.” Despite a year of political and economic instability, Ayoub claims that the agency has bucked the trend and added new accounts such as Maatouk Coffee, Rifai Innocent and Shoes, Bags & Co. “While the advertising industry has shrunk in response to these events, the agency has grown, against the odds, and has managed to increase its billings and number of clients,” Ayoub added. The agency has also established a PR arm called Go Public, which Bates PanGulf uses to service its clients, including Starbucks and Aramex, in Lebanon and Syria. Ayoub said he was looking to develop the public relations agency further but conceded that a lot of work had to be done in order to promote the value and importance of the discipline in Lebanon. He said: “It [public relations] is very underdeveloped in Lebanon. It is really in the embryonic stages. “We have developed this in co-ordination with Bates PanGulf, we are the affiliate for them in Lebanon and Syria and are looking to increase our presence in this area. There is a lot of education to be done, but we want to be one of the early players in the market.” The agency boss has indicated his intention to develop a micro network in the Middle East and has already made approaches to one independent agency in Dubai.

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