A partnership between three top industry pioneers in Hispanic marketing has led to the founding of a new minority-owned and Hispanic-led, full-service communications agency that will have offices in Dallas, Miami, and New York.
Called MEL (Messianu/Edelman/Lerma, named for founders Luis Miguel Messianu, Richard Edelman, and Pedro Lerma), the independent agency said it will provide expertise in earned-centric media, creative, and digital solutions, through a distinct Latino lens that empowers it to develop creative campaigns that represent the cultural traditions and modern lifestyle experiences of bilingual and bicultural Latinos.
MEL CEO Lerma, who’s also founder and CEO of the Dallas-based branding and creative ad agency LERMA/, said he sees the potential of the new agency.
“We at MEL believe that brands have the potential to make a real difference in society, and our focus on the Latino market and its profound influence on American culture allows us to explore new frontiers beyond conventional advertising,” Lerma said in a statement. “By harnessing the power of earned media and purpose-driven initiatives, with MEL we aim to foster genuine and impactful connections between brands and their Latino customers.”
MEL said it aims to take a visionary and earned-centric approach and forge relationships with like-minded brands that share the belief in the power of the Hispanic market.
“After I announced the launch of my own venture, Included, Pedro Lerma approached me about joining forces and this led to very interesting conversations with him, and eventually with Richard Edelman, with whom he was already exploring a partnership,” Messianu, Miami-based founding president and chief creative officer, said in a statement. “We realized that the combination of the three of us would be mighty, and we are incredibly excited to launch MEL together.”
‘Igniting a new chapter in Hispanic communications’
The agency said its logo symbolizes a pathfinder for those brands that in the context of uncertainty and constant change want to build meaningful relationships with Latino communities, anchored in the values of diversity, inclusivity, and the right representation.
“MEL represents a significant milestone in Edelman’s ongoing commitment to serving diverse markets and leveraging the growth potential within the Hispanic community,” Edelman, chairman of MEL and CEO of New York City-based Edelman, said in a statement. “This venture facilitates a dedicated and scalable integration of Hispanic-specialized capabilities with strategic and executional excellence.”
Chief Operating Officer Carla Santiago said the agency’s launch is an important moment for the Hispanic business community.
“Today marks more than opening our doors; we are igniting a new chapter in Hispanic communications,” Santiago said. “We’re impassioned by our commitment to creative excellence, integrity of insights, and cultural innovation to position us at the forefront of the influential Hispanic marketing landscape. We look forward to engaging with any brand that’s interested in reaching and connecting with Latino audiences in meaningful ways.”
MEL said it is culturally vested and uniquely suited to develop original, groundbreaking communication solutions to modern business problems.
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