Google (NSDQ: GOOG) has hired ad industry vet Torrence Boone as managing director for agency development in North America, Ad Age reported. Although Google is not considered the “frenemy” it once was by the major ad agencies, the search giant’s ability to reach out has been hampered for the past six months since its previous Madison Ave. liaison, Erin Clift, decamped for AOL (NYSE: AOL). Boone recently exited as the head of Enfatico, the ill-fated stand alone agency created by WPP Group to handle all the business on the $100 million Dell account.
After Dell executives complained about Enfatico’s work last spring, WPP began moving most of the responsibility for the account to its Young & Rubicam unit. Boone has been replaced as CEO of Enfatico by Ronnie Job.
Despite that debacle, Boone’s experience on the digital side of the ad business was enough to impress Google. Before being hired by WPP in June 2008, Boone was president of Digitas. He spent seven years at the agency. He began his career at Avenue (later Razorfish) and last served as a VP/GM there.
Boone begins his new post next week. He will report to Penry Price, VP-global agency and industry development.