CHICAGO – Reed Smith today announced the addition of two new members to its expanding advertising, brand protection, and privacy practice in Chicago. Monique (Nikki) Bhargava joins the firm’s Entertainment & Media Industry Group as a partner and Idara Udofia joins as counsel.

Bhargava brings her deep knowledge of digital media, advertising, and privacy compliance, including extensive experience in the AdTech and MarTech space. She counsels consumer brands, advertising agencies, and media and technology companies in a broad range of industries. Her practice is focused on helping clients make informed, business-oriented decisions and manage risks as they navigate new opportunities for consumer engagement and implement emerging technologies to drive their advertising, marketing, and commerce activities. Udofia advises clients on data privacy and security matters across various industries, including retail, hospitality, and travel, with a particular focus on the intersection of data privacy and media. Leveraging prior in-house experience, Udofia brings a creative, business-oriented approach to addressing complex regulatory challenges within the space.

Most recently at Loeb and Loeb, the duo rejoins former Loeb colleagues, partners Robert Newman, who moved to Reed Smith in July, and Jason Gordon who has been with Reed Smith since 2016, and with whom they already share several clients.

“This solidifies a powerhouse advertising team in Chicago and enhances our deep bench in that practice area globally,” said Steve Sessa, co-chair of the firm’s Entertainment & Media Industry Group. “They bring practice and business-minded solutions to clients to achieve their business goals while managing the complex legal risks associated with advertising, data protection, and marketing.”

In addition to helping clients implement innovative advertising and commerce strategies, Bhargava is working with clients to prepare for the impact of rapidly changing privacy regulations and developments, such as the California Privacy Rights Act and advertising platform changes, on personalized and interactive media. Her strategic counsel enables her clients to innovate and adapt in an increasingly data-driven environment. Bhargava’s clients come from a broad range of industries, including food and beverage, retail, automotive, consumer packaged goods, restaurants, pharmaceuticals, financial services, technology, and sports.

“A motivating factor in making the move to Reed Smith is the firm’s comprehensive and global experience with emerging technologies, digital advertising, and privacy regulation, which will be a significant benefit to my clients, many of whom have a global footprint,” said Bhargava. “Reed Smith’s genuine commitment to diversity, equity, and inclusion was another key factor in my decision, and I’m looking forward to supporting the firm’s efforts to recruit, retain, and promote diverse talent.”

Bhargava has been an adjunct professor at the University of Illinois College of Law where she has taught advertising and promotions law. She is a magna cum laude graduate of the University of Illinois College of Law and earned a B.A. from the University of California at Berkeley. Prior to working at Loeb & Loeb, she was at Winston & Strawn for ten years – with Rob, Jason, and Idara.