Manning Gottlieb OMD, part of Omnicom's OMD network, has sold its 51% stake in the agency to TAP's founder and chief executive, Nigel Allmond, and other minority shareholders in the TAP team.
The sale brings to an end a five-year relationship after TAP was created to house the BT television buying business. However, Allmond is keen to develop the agency as an independent business with a broader offering encompassing media planning and buying, interactive TV and sponsorship and content provision.
TAP is also thought to be keen to lose the overheads imposed by Omnicom. Manning Gottlieb was willing to cash in because its relationship was relatively hands-off and there was no strategic link between the businesses.
The agency's bid to bring in new clients has resulted in its capture this week of the £2m Gucci planning and buying business. BT accounts for around 50% of its business but it has other clients including the AA, Nissan and COI Communications.
Allmond said: "I'd like to thank Colin Gottlieb and Nick Manning for an enjoyable and profitable five years. I believe that TAP can develop best as a UK-focused independent company."
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