Apple Advertising Partner Media Arts Lab Cuts ~50 Employees

Apple advertising partner Media Arts Lab has let go of approximately 50 employees, reports Bloomberg. Media Arts Lab is owned by TBWA\Chiat\Day and Apple is its only client.

Staff cuts were made in multiple divisions, but many of the employees who were let go worked in the strategy division that helped Apple create ads for its newest products.

In a statement to Bloomberg, a Media Arts Lab spokesperson said that the firm's relationship with Apple "has never been stronger."
"Yesterday was a difficult day, as we had to part with some of our talented colleagues," a Media Arts Lab spokeswoman said in an emailed statement. "Our relationship with Apple has never been stronger, but as the needs of our client continue to evolve, we must adapt and continue to evolve the composition of our teams."
Apple's VP of Marketing Communications Tor Myhren said that Apple asked Media Arts Lab to evolve its marketing approach as Apple evolves its own approach too.
Apple's confidence and trust in MAL as our singular ad agency is as strong as it's ever been. As we continue to evolve our marketing approach, we've asked MAL to do the same.
Media Arts Lab has worked with Apple for decades and has been responsible for some of Apple's most compelling ads, including the famous "1984" ad for the original Macintosh, the "Get a Mac" series with Justin Long, and the well-known silhouette ads used for the iPod and iTunes.

More recently, Media Arts Lab was responsible for the "Welcome Home" video for the HomePod starring FKA Twigs, Apple's 2019 "Shot on iPhone" tour featuring bands like Florence and the Machine, and the "Bounce" ad for the AirPods.

Apple started creating some of its ads in house approximately five years ago, but has also continued to work with outside ad agencies. Apple two years ago began focusing more heavily on digital and regional ad campaigns, which previously led to layoffs at TBWA\Media Arts Lab.

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Advertising Legend Behind Apple’s Iconic ‘1984’, ‘Think Different’, and Mac vs. PC Campaigns Retires

The creative mastermind behind some of Apple's most iconic advertising campaigns announced his retirement today.

Lee Clow

Lee Clow, the Global Director of Media Arts at Apple's advertising agency partner TBWA, will move into an advisory role as Chairman Emeritus of TBWA\Media Arts Lab, a division of the agency he founded in 2006 to exclusively serve Apple. His iconic, award-winning career spanned five decades.

Over a 30-plus-year partnership with Apple, Clow worked on some of the company's most famous campaigns, including its "1984" ad for the original Macintosh, "Get a Mac" series of Mac vs. PC ads, "Think Different" slogan after Steve Jobs returned in 1997, and colorful silhouette ads for the iPod and iTunes.

Apple CEO Tim Cook reflected on Clow's legendary career:
During his long partnership with Steve and Apple, Lee told powerful visual stories that elevated new technologies with the passion, creativity and ingenuity that define our own humanity. He helped Apple carry itself through times of challenge, and his work inspired audiences to look beyond the horizon as an exciting future came into view. Lee's body of work over five decades hums with cleverness, warmth and enthusiasm—and there is no doubt that it will inspire and motivate generations of 'Crazy Ones' still to come.
A look back at some of those ads:

TBWA\Media Arts Lab will continue to serve Apple around the world, led by executives Katrien De Bauw and Brent Anderson.

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