Leagas Shafron Davis has caved in under the weight of its financial
problems and gone into administrative receivership.
The agency confirmed the move late on Wednesday morning after
discussions with its bankers failed to result in a financial
It comes three weeks after the agency fired 14 people - almost half its
staff - in an attempt to stave off the crisis.
At the same time, Publicis confirmed it had hired Keith Courtney, the
Leagas Shaf-ron creative director, and will reunite him with his former
deputy and copywriting partner, Rob Janowski, who was one of those made
Neither Zebra Media, the agency’s media joint venture with Zenith, nor
DNA Communications, its new-media subsidiary, are in receivership. It is
thought Zenith may buy out Leagas Shafron’s stake in Zebra.
The 11-year-old Leagas Shafron, ranked 52nd in the UK, had been fighting
for survival since the loss of its Royal & SunAlliance business last
year, compounded by the expense of buying itself out of the Wilkens
In the past few days, Ron Leagas, its chairman, is understood to have
had talks with other shops about possible deals without success.
The receivership throws into question the future of more than pounds 4
million worth of Central Office of Information business, including
special constable recruitment and the Inland Revenue, for which the
agency created Hector the tax inspector.
The agency’s other major accounts include the pounds 2.8 million Zanussi
business, Sanyo and Heals.