Up to the Minute: Ireland+Hall reopens as Hall+Co.

Plus, Bell's George Cope set to retire next year and Noise Digital wins BC Hydro.
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Hires and promotions

Dessy Pavlova has joined the public affairs team as an associate at Hill+Knowlton Strategies, where she will specialize in cannabis consumer marketing. She has worked in drug policy and the cannabis industry for more than a decade. At H+K, she will help brands navigate the marketing regulations of the space as producers and retailers prepare for the sale of cannabis-infused edibles, beverages and other  products in December.

Conference and events planner MCI Group Canada Inc. has appointed Michel Bourdon as director of business development in Montreal, where he previously served as VP of sales for the local tourism agency, Tourism Montreal, for more than seven years. His hiring follows another senior appointment in Toronto last month, part of the agency’s wider North American growth plans.

Yumi Suyama has joined Toronto post-production shop School Editing as an executive producer. She has previously produced campaigns for Destination Ontario, Volkswagen and IKEA and most recently worked on the “Go Back to Africa” campaign for Black & Abroad, which won multiple awards at Cannes this year.

New business and other news

Golin has added four new hires to its team in Toronto. James Thayer joins as senior manager and will support the agency’s growing pharmaceutical and health practice. He has previously worked with large pharma companies on influencer marketing, public relations and events. Within its consumer marketing practice, Golin has added Samantha Martin and Natalie Fox as managers (with combined work experience on client such as MicroPro Sienna, RioCan, Hennessey and Vitamix), and Juliet Camus as an associate.

A new PR agency has opened shop in Toronto with a model that “seeks to disrupt” through a network of international partners. The new agency, named Hall+Co., follows the rebranding and dissolution of Toronto-based PR agency Ireland+Hall Communications Inc. Hall+Co has maintained most of its previous client roster and hopes to expand internationally this year. Lowell Hall, co-founder of Ireland+Hall Communications Inc., becomes founder and creative lead within the new agency and will handle day-to-day operations and supervise all major accounts. Meanwhile, James Tessier, who has been with the company for over three years, stays on as VP of accounts. Along with Hall, he will have oversight of its largest accounts.

In addition, Hall+Co. Will be launching two new specialty departments, one focused on marketing and brand experience, the other on sponsorship and corporate partnership. The new shop will work alongside its sister agency,  Pennant Media Group (through which it takes on work for Zirkova Vodka) as well as international partners New Delhi-based BUZZ Communications and Rayhill Media, an American-Canadian mass media and entertainment syndicate headquartered in New York City.

BC Hydro has awarded its digital marketing business to Vancouver-based agency Noise Digital, which will work on data strategy, marketing and ad tech for the B.C. electric utility company.

Media

Trader, the parent company of AutoTrader, has acquired Quebec digital marketplace LesPac, considered by some to be a French Canadian equivalent of Kijiji. The platform is a major destination for advertisers and people looking to sell vehicles and represents Trader’s first official foray beyond the auto sector (story for Media in Canada subscribers only).  

George Cope will retire as president and CEO of Bell Canada and BCE in January 2020 after 14 years with the company and 11 of them served at the helm. Mirko Bibic, the company’s current COO, is set to replace him in the role (story for Media in Canada subscribers only).