Campaign Diary: ASA, Accenture and ESPN pies

Guy Parker, then and now
Guy Parker, then and now

Among the significant events of 25 years ago this month, intimate photographs of the Duchess of York having her toes sucked by a Texan businessman are published in the Daily Mirror – thereby ruining her holiday with the in-laws at Balmoral. Elsewhere, Snap’s Rhythm is a Dancer was at number one, while Mel Gibson and Danny Glover reprised their roles in Lethal Weapon for the third time. And this sharp-suited young blade started work as an investigations executive at the Advertising Standards Authority. Congratulations to Guy Parker, now its chief executive, for 25 years as the ad industry’s gumshoe.

There may have been more drama behind Accenture's recent acquisition of UK marketing agency Brand Learning than meets the eye. Mhairi McEwan, the chief executive and leading shareholder in Brand Learning, used corporate advisers Clarity to sell her business and is quoted on the website as saying: "They were flexible and very adaptable when we decided to significantly change direction at the last minute and were supportive throughout which helped us to secure an excellent outcome." Did Accenture swoop in and out-bid a rival at the 11th hour?

Last Thursday marked ESPN Pie Day, the broadcaster's annual traditional of sending out hot pies to mark the start of the football season. The good folks at ESPN had briefed Campaign Towers to expect its delivery between 12pm and 1.30pm; unfortunately Diary didn't read its email properly, and told the team the pies would be arriving "about 12". A team of pie-starved journalists was therefore wailing with hunger when ESPN turned up and saved the day at 1.28pm. We ate all the pies.

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