This Just In
  • SMG has been acquired by private equity firm Onex Corporation for an undisclosed sum. Onex says its acquisition of
  • SMG Holdings Inc. will close in early 2018. SMG manages 240 venues, including many of the major convention centers in the U.S.
  • Halifax Convention Centre in Nova Scotia, Canada, to debut Dec. 15 with first client event scheduled for Jan. 20, 2018. …
  • Three other events — Brides 2018, the Halifax Business Awards and the Franchise Expo —
  • also are booked for early 2018. … In all, the new facility already has 90 events on the books for 2018
  • Dan Lincoln will retire as President and CEO of the Cincinnati USA Convention & Visitors Bureau at the end of the year. He spent 11 years on
  • the job. COO Mike Laatsch will be interim CEO while a nationwide search for Lincoln’s successor takes place.
  • Shepard has acquired McCune Audio-Video-Lighting in a move to bolster Shepard’s presence in the western U.S. market. McCune has California
  • operations in Anaheim, Monterey and San Francisco and will be absorbed by Shepard’s AV department.

mdg Arrives in Midwest with Opening of Fourth Regional Office

Sandi Cain
, News Editor
May 24, 2017
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Chicago – Marketing specialist mdg (Marketing Design Group) will expand its national presence with the debut of a downtown Chicago office on June 1. The expansion is designed to serve a growing roster of clients in the Midwest, including the National Restaurant Association, ISSA, BAI, the International Carwash Association and Association of Equipment Manufacturers (AEM).

The move was made in order to enable more face-to-face interaction between mdg and both current and prospective clients. Account strategist and Executive Director Leana Salamah will lead the downtown Chicago office. Salamah said the in-person component of the agency’s brand will be better positioned to help Midwestern clients with both membership and audience development.

Mdg owners Kimberly Hardcastle-Geddes and Vincent Polito firmly believe in a physical presence in the markets they serve. To date, the largest number of clients has been focused in the Washington, D.C.-Maryland-Virginia metroplex from offices in Reston, VA, but Chicago is not far behind in the number of clients served, making it a natural choice for a brick-and-mortar presence, Hardcastle-Geddes said.

In a press release announcing the news, mdg co-owner Hardcastle-Geddes said the move “will facilitate more face-to-face interaction between mdg and current and prospective clients.” In recent years, many of those clients have come from the Midwestern cities of Chicago, Milwaukee and Indianapolis.

David Whitaker, President and CEO of Choose Chicago, the marketing arm for the visitor and convention industry in Chicago, said that the addition of mdg “speaks to the city’s importance as a leader in the meetings industry.”

The firm employs 70 people for market research, strategy development, and digital and interactive media development as well as association management, creative services and data analysts.

The Chicago office will be include marketing strategists and event professionals. They will be supported by team members from the East and West Coast offices for messaging, branding, digital marketing, international marketing and other services. Aside from Chicago, mdg has offices in San Diego, Washington, D.C. and Reston, VA.

Reach Kimberly Hardcastle-Geddes at (619) 298-1445 x16 or kimberly@marketingdesigngroup.com

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