A creative independent is joining forces with a consultancy run by a
former client and senior agency manager to propel themselves into the
pitching big league.
The alliance brings together Barry Smith, the former Publicis creative
director, Bill Thompson, a founding partner of Waldron Allen Henry and
Thompson, David Gwyther, former managing director of the drinks company,
Showerings, and Jonathan White, KHBB’s former managing director.
Their joint company - to be called Smith and Thompson, Gwyther and White
- aims to compete with major agencies for business and says it is
already gaining entry on to pitch-lists that would previously have been
barred to it.
The agreement allows both companies to continue taking work independent
of each other, although Smith and Thompson concede that the new
arrangement is likely to result in them doing less work for agencies and
more directly for clients.
Smith said: ‘Our work for agencies will decline, not because we want it
to but because agencies will feel that what we have set up is a threat.’
The new initiative comes after what Smith revealed was harsh advice from
Lyndy Payne, owner of the Advertising Agency Register. ‘She told us we
didn’t have a chance of getting business through the AAR without a more
in-depth offering. Also, there isn’t a self-respecting creative who
doesn’t need to be disciplined with sound strategic thinking,’ he said.