The Serviceplan Group officially opened its twelfth House of Communication, which is its fourth in Germany, on 20 October. This means the Cologne location also contains the full scope of services of Europe's largest owner-managed agency, covering the fields of traditional and digital communication, as well as media planning, under one roof. It is based at the Atrium in the well-known Gerling Quarter. There was a total of more than 300 guests at the opening event. The guests included some familiar faces from television, politics and culture.

Munich, 24 October 2016 — The establishment of a House of Communication in Cologne, which combines the Serviceplan, Plan.Net and Mediaplus brands, will now mean customers in the West of Germany can benefit from an integrated, 360-degree approach from the Serviceplan Group's full scope of services. Europe's largest owner-led agency has been represented in the city on the Rhine since early summer, 2014. Just a year later, the communication agency brandrelation's ten-strong Cologne division headed by Oliver Grüttemeier joined the team with Tobias Grewe and Tobias Liu.

“The development of markets in North Rhine-Westphalia and the Rhineland has been an important step for us in terms of being able to manage notable medium-sized and large enterprises directly from Cologne. We are very proud that we have been able to build our presence in this important economic location so successfully within just two years,” explains Florian Haller, the Serviceplan Group's Chief Executive Officer.

Managing Partner Tobias Grewe stresses: “Cologne is the city for creative impulses when it comes to art, culture, and media. We are hugely looking forward to working as a fully integrated House of Communication with this move to the Atrium on Von-Werth-Strasse in the Gerling Quarter. Our motto for the opening – close customer focus has a new home – truly shapes our plan here.”

In addition to Tobias Grewe, Oliver Grüttemeier and Tobias Liu are part of the Serviceplan Cologne management team, Thomas Bathelt and Esther Busch are Managing Directors of Mediaplus in Cologne, and Dominik Terruhn is responsible for the Plan.Net brand in Cologne as Managing Partner.

Oliver Grüttemeier, CEO of Serviceplan Cologne, emphasises the new centre's top-class location: “The Gerling Quarter's Atrium is the new home of the Cologne House of Communication. Its modern architecture blends perfectly with the building's historic materials dating back to 1930. Our detached building is next to the Quarter’s beautiful piazza - Cologne's only real open square. You can find peace and quiet or recharge there if you need - and that in the heart of the city centre. Our new home currently provides space to just under 100 employees, but is so well-prepared for the future that we can make the planned growth in the best way possible with space to expand.”

Tobias Liu, Managing Director of Serviceplan Cologne, explains the organisation of the Serviceplan Group in Germany: “Following our Houses in Munich, Hamburg and Berlin, the Serviceplan Group is filling the gap in the West of Germany with our Cologne House of Communication. Now the Group is present at last in one of the most important economic areas with our full portfolio of services. You can only achieve successful communication today by consistently linking all disciplines - we use the House of Communication to offer our clients the relevant specialists under one roof and in close proximity.”

Esther Bush, Managing Director of Mediaplus in Cologne, makes a point: “North Rhine-Westphalia has great demand for an owner-led, full service media agency as a counterweight to the large networks in the region. Mediaplus Regio is also setting the trend of the future alongside programmatic marketing: geo-media and geo-marketing will meet the need to address target groups more and more specifically. Ultimately, it is no longer possible to target groups without considering the individual and their space. The combined sum of our local activities will provide national coverage.”

Thomas Bathelt, also a Managing Director of Mediaplus in Cologne, announced the expansion of Mediaplus Regio: “The Cologne location will serve as a hub for the national and international expansion of Mediaplus Regio. Close local focus is not only important for our customers when it comes to their audiences, but also in cooperation with their media agency; Mediaplus Regio will open additional locations in 2017 for this reason.”

Dominik Terruhn, Managing Director of Plan.Net in Cologne, says: “We are pleased to be able to offer the leading range of services in Germany by the Plan.Net Group, now also with a powerful team directly on-site at the Cologne location. Our aim of ‘Creating Relevance’ has never had a higher profile than in the current era of programmatic advertising.”

The special expertise at the Cologne site, which has more than 90 employees, includes brand-centric company management, B2B communication, employer branding, internal communication, regional media planning, as well as all areas of digital communications, ranging from SEO and performance to display and mobile. Covestro, Deutsche Telekom, the KION Group, Samsonite, Devolo, Pulmoll, Tee Gschwendner and Kyocera are among the centre's customers.

The opening event

More than 300 guests accepted the invitation to the opening ceremony of the House of Communication in Cologne. In addition to the two presentations given by the site's management on the topics of programmatic advertising and brand-centred company management. HORNBACH Marketing Director Karsten Kühn also explained during his session in the afternoon that, in line with his company's motto, there is “always something to do”. Beyond this, Konrad Beikircher entertained with his Rhineland Kabarett, before the Serviceplan Group's CEO Florian Haller and Managing Director Ronald Focken took over for the evening program, and handed over to the city of Cologne's department head of economic analysis Ute Berg.

Red-carpet flair was provided from 7 p.m. onwards by guests including television presenters Birgit Schrowange and Mara Bergmann as well as journalist und film maker Andreas Dieck, the actresses Yvonne de Bark and Liz Baffoe, Nutritionist Dr. Alexa Iwan, art expert Dorothee Achenbach and styling expert Astrid Rudolph. An extensive image gallery can be found at: sp-url.com/hdk-koeln-fotos.

Serviceplan and the “House of Communication” model

With 3,400 employees, 31 locations around the world, and a turnover of €340 million, the Serviceplan Group is Europe’s largest owner-led or partner-led agency group, and its most broad-based. Their service portfolio follows the vision of ‘building best brands’, and spans all communication disciplines. Brand strategists, digital experts, and media professionals work by following a unique, fully integrated agency model, hand in hand with specialists in CRM, content marketing, sales, social media, or PR. Each of the various fields are consolidated into four brands: Serviceplan, founded in 1970, primarily works on traditional communications, Plan.Net covers digital communication, MediaPlus encompasses the media business, and Facit deals with innovative market research. Cologne joins Berlin, Brussels, Dubai, Hamburg, Madrid, Milan, Munich, Lyon, Paris, Vienna, and Zurich as the twelfth location combining the full portfolio of the three agency brands under one roof.


Photos below: Impressions from the House of Communication and the Managing Directors (from left) Thomas Bathelt, Tobias Grewe, Esther Busch, Tobias Liu, Oliver Grüttemeier and Dominik Terruhn.

You find photos from the opening event here in our press gallery.


Florian Stemmler

Florian Stemmler
Corporate Communication & PR

+49 40 202288 8121

E-Mail: f.stemmler(at)serviceplan.com