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The William Morris Agency Announces Alliance With Brand Sense Partners; Leading Talent Agency Launches Major New Celebrity Branding Practice in Partnership With Top Brand Extension Firm.

BEVERLY HILLS, Calif. -- The William Morris Agency (WMA) today announced a strategic association with Los Angeles-based Brand Sense Partners (BSP) that will establish a first-of-its-kind branding practice.

This partnership will combine BSP's industry-leading brand extension expertise with WMA's successful existing licensing and merchandising business and extensive resources to create significant new business opportunities for WMA's clients.

"More than at any time in our history, creative talent and other high-profile individuals are becoming brands in their own right," said William Morris CEO, Jim Wiatt. "The association with Brand Sense and the establishment of this new practice reflects an understanding that our clients require the same thoughtful brand building and brand extension approaches undertaken by any major corporate brand. This is another major step forward in our strategy of giving our clients the best, most innovative service possible."

With this strategic arrangement, WMA will dramatically increase the scope and capabilities for developing its clients' brands and their other business endeavors. The new practice will call on a team of more than 30 specialists at BSP who will serve WMA's clients by assisting them in the development of their brands as well as coordinating strategies to proactively extend those brands across traditional media, endorsements and consumer products in a highly integrated fashion.

"During the past five years, we pioneered unique brand development and brand extension methodologies while working with such corporate clients as DaimlerChrysler, Clorox and Electronic Arts," said Robert Hollander, president of BSP. "And recently, we translated our successful corporate approach into building celebrity consumer products brands, which have the potential to be multimillion-dollar businesses on their own, such as the perfume brand and business we orchestrated for Britney Spears. This expertise coupled with the strength and breadth of WMA's resources provides talented professionals with the first and only complete brand extension solution."

"We are excited to be working with WMA, the world's leading talent agency on this broad-ranging initiative," said Brian France, Chairman of BSP and Chairman & CEO of NASCAR. "We are confident that the relationship will go a long way towards complementing our existing efforts in the celebrity branding arena and cementing our leadership position in this rapidly growing segment of the market."

Discussions with a number of WMA clients have already begun and WMA and BSP expect the practice group to announce its first deals later this year.

About the William Morris Agency

Founded in 1898, the William Morris Agency, LLC is the leading talent and literary agency in the world, with principal offices in New York, Beverly Hills, Nashville, London, Miami Beach and Shanghai. The Agency represents clients in all segments of the entertainment industry, including Motion Pictures, Television, Music and Personal Appearances, Broadway Theatre and Theatrical Touring, Book Publishing, Commercial Endorsements, Sports Marketing and Corporate Consulting. The William Morris Agency can be found at http://www.wma.com.

About Brand Sense Partners, LLC

Brand Sense Partners, LLC is an integrated brand extension and business development firm that specializes in taking clients into new categories of business by leveraging their brand equity and other strategic assets. The Partnership's visionary teams of diverse industry experts develop, analyze and then execute new business initiatives -- while reducing capital costs, risk, and time to market. The result: new highly profitable revenue and accelerated strategic business growth. The firm's broad range of clients includes consumer brands in the sports, entertainment, automotive, retail, fashion, cosmetics and technology industries. Brand Sense Partners is headquartered in Los Angeles. For more information please visit www.bsp.com.
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Publication:Business Wire
Date:Aug 10, 2006
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