The independent healthcare marketing agency Kane & Finkel has shut up shop due to the loss of several key accounts.
The first quarter of 2013 saw the San Francisco-based agency lose three accounts, representing a third of its total business, within a month.
The agency was hit first when the FDA denied approval of Dynavax Technologies' adult hepatitis B vaccine Heplisav. Next, management changes claimed work on Astellas's transplant franchise, and on the launch of an ultra-orphan drug from Raptor Pharmaceuticals.
“It had a cascading effect, and even though we were picking up additional work, it wasn't significant enough to fill in the gap,” said the agency's chief creative officer, Robert Finkel, speaking to Medical Marketing and Media.
“We decided around December to notify employees and clients that we would be winding the business down. We stopped doing new business on February 28. The office is closed.”
The partnership between the two principals, Finkel and managing director John Kane, has been dissolved, and the two will no long work together.
Founded in 1997, Kane & Finkel had a long history of professional work for pharma, biotech and device clients, including UCB Pharma's epilepsy drug Keppra and brands from Astellas, Neutrogena and Merck.
Kane & Finkel served clients across the US, Asia and Europe. At one point, the agency had 75 staff, five of them in a London office opened in 2010.
“We had been very successful, but all the signs were there that we had to move on,” Finkel told MM&M . “I have a lot of pride in what we did. We won many creative awards and built many long-term relationships with clients.”
Finkel expects to stay in healthcare. His new consultancy, RMF Consultancy, has already signed up a number of healthcare clients. John Kane's plans have yet to be announced.