Why Goodby Silverstein & Companions is reopening an workplace in New York

The revolving doors of the New York office of Goodby Silverstein & Partners have opened again.

Five years ago, the San Francisco-based omnicom agency GS&P closed New York after less than three years in business following the failed merger of Comcast with Time Warner. During its initial tenure, the New York office independently gained new business with the New York Post, StreetEasy and ZocDoc owned by Zillow. In its heyday, the office employed almost 20 people, but when it closed it was only eight.

While a number of GS&P employees have worked in various New York locations over the past few years, the agency has now made its return to Manhattan official and opened a new office at 200 Varick Street.

The office's leadership team consists of Executive Creative Directors Danny Gonzalez and David Suarez, who have worked with clients Liberty Mutual and Pepsi across the coast and on new business ventures. Group branding strategy Katie Coane, who returned to the agency after a stint at Droga5 and works for Comcast and Liberty Mutual; Katie Lancaster, Account and Operations Manager, who is also returning from Droga5 and Cam Miller, who have returned to the agency after serving at Gray New York as Creative Director for Liberty Mutual. Suarez will physically join the New York team in the spring.

We emailed GS&P a few questions regarding the decision to return to New York and open an office during a pandemic.

The following interview has been edited for brevity and clarity.

Adweek: Which customers does the New York office serve?

Danny Gonzalez, Executive Creative Director of GS&P: We are currently working with Pepsi and Liberty Mutual Insurance. We have just won three new business areas that we will announce shortly. GS&P NYC also created shoppable windows for PayPal last year that were awarded a Gold One Show Pencil.

Brian McPherson, Managing Partner of GS & P: From the beginning we opted for a bicoastal model. Every client we work with and who is present on the east coast has team members from both offices. We think this is a great way to stay culturally and practically connected to things in SF.

How did customer relationships affect the decision? How did new business gains influence the decision?

McPherson: We had a collection of executives and employees who wanted to move to New York but didn't want to leave GS&P. In a way, we didn't open this office because customers asked for it, but because our employees asked for it.

Having an office in New York makes a lot of sense for a number of reasons, but the opening of the office was driven more by current and former employees who were in New York for various reasons but who really wanted to be a part of GS&P .

How important was access to talent for the decision?

GS&P Partner, CCO Margaret Johnson: New York City has always been a hub for fashion, music, art and culture. This opens up a new pool of diverse and talented employees for GS & P.

Why did GS&P decide to open this new office now?

Gonzalez: We've been slowly expanding our presence in New York City for several years. And now, after the new business gains and some work we're really proud of at Liberty Mutual and Pepsi, it seemed like the time was right to finally get it public.

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