Naked Communications Opens in Brazil With Creative Fefa Romano
In Social-Media-Crazy Country, Launch Is Done on Twitter And FacebookBy: Laurel Wentz, Published: Mar 27, 2012
Naked Communications is opening in Brazil with a social-media launch on Facebook, Twitter and Pinterest orchestrated by Fernanda "Fefa" Romano, an international creative star who is returning to her native Brazil to be a partner at the new Sao Paulo-based agency.
Naked Brasil is teaming up with a local shop with digital expertise called Player, and several Player execs will join the Naked team, which is based at Player's offices in Sao Paulo's trendy Vila Madalena neighborhood. The agency opens with one client, a local telecommunications company.
"Brazil is a market everyone's looking at closely," said Steve Gatfield, the former Interpublic and Leo Burnett exec who joined Naked in May 2011 as New York- based co-chairman to help oversee global expansion. "It needs communications planning and that's what we do."
Mr. Gatfield said Naked started working with Player earlier on projects, and that enabled Naked to pitch for the telecommunications client before being officially open for business.
"What you have to do is get people who see the future as you do rather than run around buying businesses, where the goal is entirely transactional and not vision-related," he said.
Naked has also hired Pedro Assumpcao, a Brazilian agency exec who has worked with Ms. Romano in the past, to run Naked Brasil.
The social-media launch started Thursday evening, when Ms. Romano tweeted and posted on Facebook "Start your engines. We are coming. Countdown to some really cool news." A couple hours later, she tweeted "I am @NakedBR" with a link to the new agency's Portuguese-language site (nakedbrasil.com.br). She also changed her profile picture on her Facebook page to the word "Sou" (Portuguese for "I am") next to a red rectangle with the word "Naked." Since then, a flurry of posts and tweets, mostly in Portuguese, have welcomed Naked to Brazil, a country that has gone crazy for social media.
Fefa Romano last worked in Brazil as a digital creative at DM9 DDB and moved to New York in 2006 as executive creative director of Lowe Worldwide. The agency transferred her to Madrid a year later as global creative director of Lola, an international effort targeting Latin markets. In 2008 she moved to the U.K. and spent 18 months as a creative director at JWT before joining Euro RSCG in London as global creative director digital and experiential.
She left Euro in May 2011, and has been talking with Naked for about six months.
Ms. Romano and Naked aren't the only recent arrivals in Brazil. Earlier this month, MDC Partners' CP&B teamed up with local agency Peralta, and Anomaly is believed to be looking at Brazil. Wieden & Kennedy, opened a little over a year ago, is already well-established in Sao Paulo.
Mr. Gatfield said Naked, which has agencies in the U.S., Europe and Asia, isn't planning any other Latin America offices: "We're about a few resource centers we shape shift around."