In October 2023, WPP unveiled a significant transformation in its client services with the merger of Wunderman Thompson and VMLY&R, creating the industry’s largest creative agency under the new name, VML. This move brings together two globally recognised agencies, renowned for their exceptional work with leading brands like Microsoft, Colgate-Palmolive, Dell, Nestlé, Ford, The Coca-Cola Company and others.
The future of building strong brands and businesses requires the interconnectivity of brand experience, commerce and customer experiences. We recognized the immediate opportunity to create what every consultancy and advertising agency aspires to build with the formation of VML. We’re especially excited to present our new offering to the industry as we don’t believe there is another company as creatively awarded with our depth in customer experience and commerce.
Jon Cook, Global CEO, VML
VML’s journey began in 1992, founded by Kansas City advertising luminaries John Valentine, Scott Cormick, and Craig Ligibel, whose initials gave the company its name. Initially, Valentine McCormick Ligibel offered a blend of online and offline services, including advertising, business consulting, and software application development.
In 2001, VML joined the WPP family as an independent group of agencies. The company then underwent a significant merger with Young & Rubicam in 2018, becoming VMLY&R. The latest merger with Wunderman Thompson (a fusion of Wunderman and J Walter Thompson) brings VML full circle, reverting to its original, simpler name while encapsulating a far broader spectrum of capabilities and expertise.
The newly formed VML is poised to drive creative brand growth and transformative strategies for its clients, leveraging top-tier data operations, technology platforms, and partnerships with key technology firms.
Scale matters in today’s world as AI and technology transform marketing and global clients look to simplify their relationships. VML will combine world-class creativity with deep expertise in data, marketing technology and platforms to deliver competitive advantage for ambitious brands. It’s another important step forward for WPP as we continue to reshape our offer for the future, simplify our business and unlock further benefits of scale.
Mark Read, CEO of WPP
VML can now be found on the premium three-letter domain name VML.com. Three-letter .com domains are esteemed for their rarity and value, often sought after by global brands. VML.com exemplifies a strategic advantage in establishing an online presence, effectively building credibility and attracting customers, thanks to its immediate association with authority and trustworthiness. This domain will significantly aid the new VML brand in carving out an accessible digital identity, crucial for its global outreach and brand recognition.
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