NEW YORK—FWV Cumberland, the partnership between North Carolina-based French/West/Vaughan and the J.B. Cumberland Group, a New York public relations boutique best known for its work in the home products sector, has been dissolved effective August 31.
At the same time, French/West/Vaughan is expanding its New York operation which is led by Lauren Taylor, executive vice president & co-founder. She will joined by several FWV staff members, a number of new hires, and two New York-based PR agencies that FWV has reached agreements to acquire. An announcement regarding both firms will be made shortly.
“Joanna and I had philosophical differences about the management of the office that led us to conclude that an amicable parting was the best for all involved,” said FWV President & CEO Rick French. “Going forward, FWV will build out its own wholly-owned office in New York at a greatly accelerated pace, and with a more diverse focus, than what I felt we could accomplish with FWV Cumberland.”
J.B. Cumberland Public Relations will retain the staff and North Chelsea offices it brought into the partnership. Joanna Cumberland will reassume her role as president and CEO. “Our team is excited to go back to its boutique agency roots and focus on our specialty in consumer lifestyle and gourmet products,” said Cumberland, who will be leading a staff of seven people.