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Shreveport ad agency makes LSU 100, staffs up with national clients

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Kate Archer Kent
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The fastest growing businesses in the world that are led by LSU alumni will be honored Friday at the Crowne Plaza Hotel in Baton Rouge.

Shreveport-based Gremillion and Pou Integrated Marketing is on the LSU 100, a highly competitive program that identifies the 100 fastest growing businesses that are led by former LSU students.

Anne Gremillion, and business partner Robert Pou, class of 1979, hung out their shingle 33 years ago. The company has close to tripled in size over the past five years with 88 employees. The firm’s casino division is booming, according to Gremillion, who found a leg up through strategic hires.

“We would see really, really talented people being laid off from the casinos locally. We seized those opportunities to bring them on board. They had a very special knowledge. They had worked on the casino side with [advertising] agencies, and they knew what agencies should have been doing,” Gremillion said.

The firm now has clients in every time zone, according to Pou. Most of their business now is outside of Shreveport-Bossier. The creative firm goes toe-to-toe with big city agencies and prospective clients have to ask: where is Shreveport?

Pou finds an upside to its Shreveport roots. He can keep a low overhead and give clients more bang for their buck.

“In pitching our business against some of these larger agencies in some of these larger cities in the Dallas, Las Vegas and Chicago markets, they find we can do a quality of work that is either as good or better, and we’re at a lot more affordable rate,” Pou said.

In 2012, Gremillion and Pou Integrated Marketing was awarded the Brookshire’s Grocery account beating out 49 creative firms. The company opened an office in Tyler last year where Brookshire's is based. Gremillion beams at the thought of having 19 employees in East Texas.

“Having an office in Tyler, I’m about to burst with pride. To be able to grow that market -- back in my home state -- would make me so thrilled,” Gremillion said.

Pou will accept the award in Baton Rouge. He also hopes to catch up with old professors and network with new business prospects in South Louisiana. The ranked list will be kept under wraps until the honoree luncheon.

The Stephenson Entrepreneurship Institute hosts the LSU 100, now in its fourth year of the ranking.

Chuck Smith brings more than 30 years' experience to Red River Radio having started out as a radio news reporter and moving into television journalism as a newsmagazine producer / host, talk-show moderator, programming director and managing producer and news director / anchor for commercial, public broadcasting and educational television. He has more recently worked in advertising, marketing and public relations as a writer, video producer and media consultant. In pursuit of higher learning, Chuck studied Mass Communications at Southern Arkansas University in Magnolia and motion picture / television production at the University of California at Los Angeles. He has also taught writing for television at York Technical College in Rock Hill, South Carolina and video / film production at Centenary College of Louisiana, Shreveport.