Tunheim Hosts Global Partners, Discuss the Evolving Agency Industry

Over the weekend Tunheim hosted the fall meeting for the Americas region of IPREX, a $250 million network of communications agencies in which Tunheim is a leading partner, in downtown Minneapolis. The meeting brought together a collection of 35 colleagues from across North and South America, as well as partners from Europe and the Asia Pacific, at the Le Meridien Chambers for the three-day conference.

The conference concentrated on partner-wide collaboration, how to win collectively as a global network of independent agencies and offered interesting perspectives on a variety of topics, like our network’s strong expertise with Hispanic/Latin markets.

Nick Vehr Vehr CommunicationsWe spoke with Nick Vehr, current president of Vehr Communications based in Cincinnati, Ohio, about the meeting, the differentiation IPREX offers its partner agencies and his role as the Americas president.

Tell us about your role with IPREX.

I have been affiliated with IPREX, as a partner agency or a client, for more than 23 years. I am currently the IPREX Americas president. We also have a global president and presidents of the EMEA and APAC regions of the world. Our agency, Vehr Communications, has been a member of IPREX for seven-plus years.

What are your views on the meeting topics from the Americas Meeting (Latin markets, IPREX collaboration and more) held this past weekend?

IPREX empowers every partner agency to punch above their weight class. As partners in IPREX, we are all global agencies operating with 1,800 outstanding professionals from 115 offices worldwide. Collegiality and collaboration are the key differentiators that IPREX brings to many different client: B2B and B2C, for profit and nonprofit, public and private, all over the world. And, the Latin market presents the next greatest opportunity for IPREX and its partners there and around the world.

How do you think IPREX is uniquely positioned to win business and deliver for clients?

The quality of IPREX partners is ensured by a disciplined and structured vetting process. Combined with the collegiality and professionalism of the network, IPREX members are empowered by engaging meetings supported by outstanding professional staff that positions the partner agencies to win and deliver. It’s a powerful combination.

What do you think makes the IPREX model advantageous for clients compared to the traditional holding company model?

Even the largest global corporations are questioning why they should continue underwriting the very expensive traditional holding company agency model. With the IPREX network, because of our high-quality partners who work well with each other, value is maximized — quality is higher while costs are localized and controllable. In IPREX, talented professionals aren’t assigned to markets as part of a career progression. Instead, they’re likely there because they call that place home. They know the markets intuitively and completely.

What do you think is the next big thing that clients will need to rethink over the next few years on how they leverage their agencies?

While the traditional industry verticals are collapsing — and high-quality, disciplined and leading-edge strategy and creativity are emerging from new, diverse and smaller sources — clients will need to rely either on those who have invested to know them best, those who understand the nuances and intricacies of specific markets and channels, or both. That’s specifically what they’ll find in the IPREX network.

Do you have an opinion about the role agencies will play for their clients in the future? Share your thoughts in the comments below.

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