Chicago, JWT and CPG

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What’s the idea with Chicago? 

Is it losing its luster as an advertising community? JWT, one of the city’s cornerstone agencies, is down to 50 people. At its highpoint JWT employed upwards of 800 in Chicago; some of which were the highest priced, highest profile creative people in the business. Chicago has always been a stronghold of packaged goods advertising, thanks to its proximity to the giant food and beverage manufacturers, which makes me wonder if consumer packaged goods (CPG) marketers are less committed to traditional consumer advertising – the recession aside.  Of the thirteen companies identified by Ad Age as Super Bowl XLIII advertisers only Coke, Pepsico, Anheuser Busch and Pedigree are present. The rest are car, tire, and Internet plays. Hmmm. Peace!