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Roman, some staff, exit advertising firm

October 9, 2008

Indianapolis advertising executive Dan Roman and several other employees have departed Roman Brand Group in the wake of a merger with Akron, Ohio-based Malone Advertising.

Both Roman Brand Group and Malone Advertising are part of New York advertising heavyweight JWT. Under a plan that went into effect Oct. 1, Roman will have two general managers, Chris Bass and Bonnie Surber, who answer to Malone President and CEO Fred Bidwell.

"Unfortunately in a combination, there are often some redundant positions," Bidwell said in a telephone interview. "Clearly we want to find synergies."

Bidwell declined to say how many staffers were laid off. He said the consolidation, which began nine months ago, leaves the Indianapolis office with a staff of about 30.

Roman elected to leave and will remain indefinitely as a consultant. He could not be reached for comment.

Roman Brand Group creates "call now" television ads for Carmel-based ITT Educational Services Inc. Bidwell said that's one skill not found at Malone, which has 250 employees in offices around the country working for consumer-products clients such as Nestle.

Another result of the consolidation is a new subsidiary of Malone Advertising called Market and Main Media, Bidwell said. The group, based in Indianapolis, will focus on planning local media purchases for national advertisers such as Malone's client Deere & Co.

Market and Main Media is to launch Oct. 24. It will be staffed by 20 people already employed at Roman Brand Group.

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