Pound & Grain builds out its media offering

Josee Thibault joins the digital agency as its first media director as it pursues new opportunities through integrating media, creative and strategy.

Top row, left to right: Josee Thibault, media director; Thomas Morton, director of strategy; Alex Tangi, head of production. Bottom row, left to right: Jeff Monaco, group account director; Emmanuel Davis, head of technology; Oleg Portnoy, design director.

Digital agency Pound & Grain has brought its first-ever media director into the fold.

Josee Thibault spent the last 13 years at Media Experts, most recently as managing director of social media division Society @ ME. She will be bringing that expertise, as well as 360-degree experience planning for brands such as Bell Canada, WestJet, Interac and BMW to the creative digital agency.

Pound & Grain managing partner Sandy Fleischer tells MiC that the agency previously employed a couple of full-time and freelance media planners when needed, but with the recent assignments from Hormel Canada, Save-On-Foods, William Grant & Sons and Arterra, it was time to bring on a media director.

“We’ve been managing media on behalf of our clients for a number of years and we’ve done a great job with it, but in order to take it to the next level and take advantage of the opportunities that we are finding, we needed to bring in a media director so we could really scale things,” Fleischer explained. “It’s a position that we identified going back a couple of years, but it took some time to find the right person.”

Fleischer says Pound & Grain is open to media-only mandates, but says where the agency can provide “some really interesting value” is advance what is possible in its work through a closer integration with media.

Thibault is not the only recent addition bringing media expertise to Pound & Grain. Last summer, the agency hired Emmanuel Davis as head of technology, having held similar roles at Puzzle, Mindshare, Isobar and OgilvyOne in London.

Other hires Pound & Grain has made since last summer include director of strategy Thomas Morton, whose will lead cross-disciplinary, digital-focused strategy teams; head of production Alex Tangi; design director Oleg Portnov; and group account director Jeff Monaco.

Sandy Fleischer says all of the recruits will significantly broaden the agency’s offerings, which intersect closely with the growing media team.

“I think by nature of being a digitally forward agency, whether it be through things like search or through social, we were always coming really close to media and we had a few clients that requested that we take over the media aspect, beyond just the strategic and creative and services,” he says. “That developed organically, but what we’ve found now as we’ve started going to market with this latest creative solution, is that we’ve had a lot of opportunities come our way that, frankly, might not have previously.”

All hires are based in Toronto, with the exception of the Vancouver-based Morton.