Thursday, March 4, 2010

Extreme Group: The Early Days

Extreme Group is an agency who's been making waves on the east coast for years. Not too long ago they set up shop here in Toronto and have proved that they're not just a bunch of laid back east coasters.

Most recently they garnered attention for their work on Black Sunshine. In a video heavy site users go through the motions of buying coffee in a matter not unlike buying narcotics. Historically, they did one of my favorite anti-smoking campaign - which is made all the better if you’re a Fubar fan.

Agency founder Paul LeBlanc recently blogged about how Extreme Group came to be. It's a fantastic story that oddly enough doesn't include him working a day in any other agency.

It was January 3, 2007 that the crushing reality struck me while I sat in a sublet office space on Dufferin Street, surrounded by 14 empty desks and computers and silence... "what the fuck did I just do??" I didn't know a sole in Toronto, had no revenue, no clients, no staff or contacts. But here I sat at my desk looking out over the expansive, cold city with it staring right back at me challenging me to even try.
Click here for the full story.


  1. Hi there. Thanks for the blog. It's true. I haven't worked a day inside of another agency. I remember a couple years ago being at Cannes and Chuck Porter (from Crispin Porter) was on stage along side of Sir Martin Sorrell, CEO of WPP. The moderator was asking about "integration" in an industry full of silos. Mr. Sorrell was on the defensive about how they are progressing and staying relevant being a multinational with lots of divisions. When Chuck Porter was asked to comment, his response was, "I dunno, I've never worked at another agency and we just kinda get in a room and figure shit out". That statement was a reassurance for me that building an agency from ground up and making all the mistakes and letting common sense prevail was right for me. We've done well by it so far.

    Paul LeBlanc

  2. Yeah, thanks for this! I'll be watching.