Smith Barney tried to continue the memorable campaign after Houseman's death, but it just didn't have the same authority.
Smith Barney & Co. was formed in 1938 through the merger of Carles D. Barney & Co., founded in 1873, and Edward B. Smith & Co., founded in 1892. In the late 1980's the retail brokerage firm Smith Barney was owned by Primerica Financial Services. Sandy Weill's company Commercial Credit purchased Primerica in 1988, for $1.5 billion. In 1992, Weill paid $722 million to buy a 27 percent share of Travelers Insurance. By the end of 1993, the merged company was known as Travelers Group Inc., and was wholly owned by Weill. In September 1997, Travelers acquired Salomon Inc., (parent company of Salomon Brothers Inc.) for over $9 billion in stock, and merged it with its own investment arm to create Salomon Smith Barney.
In April 1998 Travelers Group announced an agreement to undertake a $76 billion merger between Travelers and Citicorp, creating the largest single financial services company in the world. It now has over one trillion US dollars in assets.
Return of the Smith Barney name
The firm's brand name remains in the mind of American consumers through television commercials in which actor John Houseman proclaimed "Smith Barney makes money the old-fashioned way--we earn it."
25 August 1995, New York Times, Advertising by Stuart Elliott, pg. D5:
Smith Barney summons the ghost of a haughty
John Houseman in a revival of its "timeless" ads.
Mr. Houseman uttered the theme in 18 commercials, from 1979 to 1986, created by the Oglivy & Mather New York Unit of the WPP Group, which handled the account from 1979 until McCann New York took over. Oglivy New York's tenure spanned the days of Smith Barney, Harris Upham & Company; that firm's acquisition by Primerica, later the Group; a combination with Shearson Lehman Brothers, and some renamings.
Mr. Houseman helped turn the slogan into a catch phrase with his deliberately haughty delivery, echoing his performance as the curmudgeonly Professor Kingsfield in the TV series "The Paper Chase." The actor Leo McKern delivered the lime in place of Mr. Houseman in 1987 and in 1988, the year Mr. Houseman died. A campaign featuring the voice of George C. Scott ran from 1989 to 1992.
Word Mark SMITH BARNEY WE MAKE MONEY THE OLD FASHIONED WAY. WE EARN IT.
Goods and Services (CANCELLED) IC 036. US 100 101 102. G & S: financial and investment services, namely investing funds of others in such vehicles as stocks, bonds, fixed income vehicles, securities and the like. FIRST USE: 19790930. FIRST USE IN COMMERCE: 19790930
Mark Drawing Code (1) TYPED DRAWING
Design Search Code
Serial Number 74607166
Filing Date December 5, 1994
Current Filing Basis 1A
Original Filing Basis 1A
Published for Opposition December 12, 1995
Registration Number 1959965
Registration Date March 5, 1996
Owner (REGISTRANT) Smith Barney Inc. CORPORATION DELAWARE 388 Greenwich Street New York NEW YORK 10013
Assignment Recorded ASSIGNMENT RECORDED
Attorney of Record Albert Robin
Type of Mark SERVICE MARK
Live/Dead Indicator DEAD
Cancellation Date December 7, 2002
President Barak Obama quoted the advertisement, “You remember that ad that they used to have out there that said uh,’we earn money the old fashioned way. We earn it.’ Well, we need to get back to that philosophy, cause thats what all of you do. You are out there earning a living and we’ve got to reward people who are working hard, not the bubble and bust economy we have experienced in recent years.”
Presidential town hall meeting
Orange County Fair and Event Center
Costa Mesa, California, March 18, 2009
CNN video title: “Prosperity for the Long Run”