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Campbell Ewald relocating headquarters, 600 workers to Detroit

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Campbell Ewald CEO Bill Ludwig says his firm belongs in Detroit  (Credit: Fox 2 News) Campbell Ewald CEO Bill Ludwig says his firm belongs in Detroit (Credit: Fox 2 News)
DETROIT (WJBK) -

The sign above Ford Field says it all, welcoming an advertising firm to its new headquarters in the old Hudson's warehouse.  The home of the Lions is now also the home of Campbell Ewald.

"Today we're returning to Detroit, and we think it's the right time to do so," said Campbell Ewald CEO Bill Ludwig.

Employees were bused in from Warren to see the new space.  After 35 years in that suburb, Campbell Ewald is returning to the city where it was founded in 1911 and spent its first 65 years.  The firm will be bringing with it 600 employees.

"I think it's a very, very vibrant time in the city," Ludwig said.  "It's part of our DNA, and I'm glad that it's being reawakened here in the city."

He said his employees are excited to be moving downtown.  Mayor Dave Bing was thrilled to welcome them.

"What you bring to the city, the vibrancy, the intellectual capability and capacity and the 600 people that are going to be coming back to the City of Detroit, is a real boom for downtown Detroit," Bing said.

"It's a fulfillment of the Ford family's vision with this space to do something that was more than just a stadium," said Detroit Lions President Tom Lewand.

The space is not exactly move in ready yet.  They're hoping to have the transformation complete by the end of the year, moving Campbell Ewald into its new headquarters come December or January.

The firm is still in talks about possible tax incentives, but has received no concessions yet.  As for Warren, Mayor Jim Fouts said they had not expected the firm to move out of the city.  It's a setback, but Campbell Ewald plans to keep some workers in Warren and eventually sell their building to another successful company.

But what about Detroit, the future of that city with emergency management looming?  Ludwig said that did not deter them.

"We're a tough, hard working agency, a very persevering agency, and we're a very resilient agency, and so we belong in Detroit," he said.

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