What's in a name? FCB Health's powerhouse shop Area 23 extends its brand power

Award-winning ads, such as this one for a Bayer awareness campaign, are one reason Area 23 is extending its brand. (Area 23)

FCB Health’s latest agency is leveraging its Area 23 creative powerhouse brand name and talent with a new shop. Called Area 23 on Hudson, the new agency combines the creative acumen of its award-winning Area 23 with the medical communications expertise of Hudson Global, which had been a standalone FCB Health agency.

Area 23 creative director Tim Hawkey and managing director Renee Mellas will oversee the new venture, while Michael Lieberman from Area 23 and Jamie Cipriano from Hudson Global will handle day-to-day operations. Mellas attributed the move to client demand, as more and more seek agency partners to work with their brands from pre-launch through launch and beyond.

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“There are many clients blurring the line between promo med ed and AOR (agency of record) assignments. Area 23 On Hudson enables us to provide solutions that will infuse critical med ed needs with Area 23’s “What If” creativity,” said Mellas in an email interview, adding the new agency will also be able to more easily tap the FCB Health network of services and expertise.

Area 23 won nine creative awards at the Cannes Lions International Festival of Creativity this year, helping drive FCB Health's win as healthcare network of the year. The assist came just a year after Area 23 won its own healthcare agency of the year nod. Over the past seven years under Hawkey and Mellas, Area 23 has quadrupled in size and grown its creative reputation, regularly pulling awards from other major shows such as Clio Health, Effie Awards and the One Show.

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When asked if this is the beginning of more Area 23 agency branding, Mellas didn’t answer directly but left the door open, saying Area 23 will “continue to embrace change and innovate to better deliver for our clients. That’s why we consider ourselves ‘never finished.’”