Mellors rues missed start-up chance

Tim Mellors, Grey’s newly appointed creative chief, has spoken publicly of his frustration at the failure of the agency bearing his name to break into the big league.

Tim Mellors, Grey’s newly appointed creative chief, has spoken

publicly of his frustration at the failure of the agency bearing his

name to break into the big league.



Interviewed on Campaign’s website, CampaignLive, last week, he confessed

that Mellors Reay & Partners, about to be merged with its Grey parent,

was a blown opportunity. And he indicated it may take him up to three

years to give Grey genuine creative credibility.



Mellors Reay, which will keep its autonomy as one of Grey’s four newly

created ’agencies within agencies’, launched in 1994 amid high hopes

that it would provide the Grey group’s creative counterbalance.



But Mellors said: ’To pretend Mellors Reay lived up to my or the

industry’s expectations would be naive and false.’



He added: ’We started out really well but we couldn’t break out of the

middle-sized bracket or into the creative hotshop style of work I

suppose I might have been associated with before. I think Mellors Reay

was a good agency. But, two years in, I had to accept it wasn’t going to

be a great agency.’



At the same time, Mellors brushed aside suggestions that Grey’s

internationally-aligned client list was resistant to exciting creative

work and that Grey bosses were more interested in the bottom line than

creative potency.



Procter & Gamble and Mars were among the major Grey clients putting a

heavy accent on creativity, he said. ’What surprised me - and the reason

I’m here - is that the attitude from the top down is both open to change

and convinced that it is necessary.’



Mellors admitted that a ’sea change in attitude’ would be needed at the

agency and that changes in the creative department might be

necessary.



Asked if, like Andrew Cracknell at Bates Dorland, it would take him

three years to change the creative perception of Grey, Mellors replied:

’I think Andrew’s time span is a sensible one and I suppose I have three

years in the back of my mind too.’



The interview is available in the ’transcript’ area of CampaignLive’s

Talkback channel at www. campaignlive.com.



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