Erika Engle

Split-off advertising
agency buys Studio
Ignition design firm


Sunday, August 15, 2004

>> Noah Tom was a partner in the design house Studio Ignition, which was purchased by the Harris Agency LLC. An item in TheBuzz column on page C1 Aug. 3 incorrectly reported his name as Tom Noah

The Honolulu Star-Bulletin strives to make its news report fair and accurate. If you have a question or comment about news coverage, call Editor Frank Bridgewater at 529-4791 or email him at

AD man Doug Harris recently welcomed a new arrival. The Harris Agency LLC, which split from Laird Christianson Advertising Inc. in April, has acquired design house Studio Ignition Inc. for an undisclosed sum

"We've admired them for 10 years," said Harris, the agency's president. "I'm very excited. These guys are very talented."

Harris was referring to Stephen Goss and Tom Noah, partners in Studio Ignition. The team won a national ADDY award for its packaging design for Clara Confectioners, which also won local awards. The packaging got the product noticed by a New York City-based confectioner who sells the Kapolei-produced baked goods in her shops on Broome Street and in Soho.

The addition of Goss and Noah brings Harris' staff to nine, he said.

The decision to be acquired "took a little bit of soul-searching, but Doug's got a good reputation in town and his philosophy and approach to advertising and our philosophy and approach to design is very similar," Goss said.

"We didn't rush into it. We sat down and kind of worked on a lot of their creative for the last couple months. He's got some great team members over there."

Studio Ignition will continue working with its clients, including Hawaiian Host Inc. and Ala Moana Center.

The new two will also contribute to the agency's efforts on behalf of KFC, Burger King, Royal Kona Coffee, Miller Light and the paper you're reading.

AdWorks follow-up

With the AdWorks Inc. door closed, new doors are open for two former executives of the company.

David Sayre, former managing director of PRWorks, AdWorks' public relations division, is hanging out his own shingle.

Sayre Public Relations Inc. will represent most of the clients he handled for PRWorks.

Vice President Patrick Bullard has landed, with the same title, at 32-year old Gib Black Advertising Group Inc. Opened by husband and wife Gib and Jackie Black in 1972, it was originally called Gib Black & Friends Inc.

"We've always been a small boutique agency and we like it that way," Gib said. Black doesn't divulge his billing information and thus is not included in any list of top agencies.

Clients include Roy's Restaurants, Tori Richard and Pacific Harley-Davidson, a list that is now beefed up with the seven-figure Papa John's Hawaii LLC account, confirmed the company's president and owner, Jeff Jervik.

In addition to advertising, the budget goes to build programs to support the community, such as University of Hawaii athletics and a teacher recognition program in partnership with other businesses, Jervik said.

Both Bullard and Black see the move as a stepping stone.

"We have an understanding about where I want to be in the ad business and someday he wants to retire," Bullard said. "We're looking at this as an opportunity for both of us."

Preferring the word seasoned to old to describe his experience versus Bullard's youth, Black said, "Even though we're in different generations, we're both Kailua boys, raised in Kailua."

It's definite grounds for bonding.

"We're looking forward to spending some time with (Bullard) and hopefully making some great advertising together," said Black.

And Gib is short for ... ?

"We don't go there," Black laughed.

See the Columnists section for some past articles.

Erika Engle is a reporter with the Star-Bulletin. Call 529-4302, fax 529-4750 or write to Erika Engle, Honolulu Star-Bulletin, 500 Ala Moana Blvd., No. 7-210, Honolulu, HI 96813. She can also be reached at:



E-mail to Business Editor


Text Site Directory:
[News] [Business] [Features] [Sports] [Editorial] [Do It Electric!]
[Classified Ads] [Search] [Subscribe] [Info] [Letter to Editor]
© 2004 Honolulu Star-Bulletin --