Abbott Mead Vickers BBDO has shot to the top of the annual Campaign
Top 300 Agencies league with a 24.29 per cent year-on-year rise in
billings to pounds 306.81 million (ACN MEAL).
AMV displaces Saatchi and Saatchi, which drops 13.78 per cent to fifth
from its number one position last year, and J. Walter Thompson, which
falls to second after temporarily taking the lead in the last quarterly
M&C Saatchi rises 12 places to eighth in only its second year after a
165.92 per cent increase in billings from pounds 65.79 million to pounds
M&C Saatchi’s entry is also worthy of note because (like CDP, AMV and
WCRS) its claimed billings were actually less (pounds 158 million) than
the ACN MEAL recorded figures.
The worst performers in the Top 30 were Bartle Bogle Hegarty, down 28.25
per cent and three places to 18th at pounds 87.58 million, Saatchi and
Saatchi, and GGT, down 11.16 per cent at pounds 62.98 million in 22nd
place. Barker and Ralston and Arc dropped out of the Top 30 on the back
of 15.77 per cent and 33.27 per cent falls respectively. Surprisingly,
St Luke’s dropped 13.7 per cent from 28th to 36th place with pounds
Other headline news from the latest figures include TMD Carat narrowing
the gap behind Zenith at the top of the Media Agencies’ Top 50 to pounds
153 million from pounds 205 million, and the arrival of the fledgling
Mediapolis and New PHD operations at numbers five and seven
McCann-Erickson Manchester remains the largest regional agency with
billings of pounds 48.96 million, topping a table that reveals huge
increases in billings for the agencies below it: BDH Advertising,
Faulds, J. Walter Thompson Manchester and Advertising Principles.
The SMI Group and Primary Contact head the business-to-business agency
HHCL and Partners re- corded the second-largest percentage increase, up
88.24 per cent to pounds 73.3 million in 21st place. BDH Advertising
entered the table at 28th with a 52.29 per cent rise to pounds 41.51
million, Simons Palmer Clemmow Johnson came in at 27 with a 50.82 per
cent rise to pounds 41.91 million, and Butler Lutos Sutton Wilkinson was
30th with a 49.78 per cent rise to pounds 38.99 million.
Other notable performers in the Top 30 include Publicis, up to seventh
place from 12th with a 29.29 per cent increase in billings from pounds
144.22 million to pounds 186.46 million, Euro RSCG Wnek Gosper, up 17.96
per cent to 13th place with pounds 145.19 million, and BST- BDDP, up
31.23 per cent to pounds 54.74 million in 25th place.
Young and Rubicam, up 23.2 per cent to pounds 101.85 million, CDP, up
36.49 per cent to pounds 80.6 million, and FCB, up 21.67 per cent to
pounds 61.98 million, all continued to bounce back from their recent
vicissitudes. Outside the Top 30, the star shop was Rainey Kelly
Campbell Roalfe, up 79.9 per cent to pounds 26.77 million.
Editor’s comment: Abbott Mead’s is a spectacular performance and the
agency is a worthy industry leader. Its position will be strengthened by
BT’s continuing increase in spend and the Prudential coming online.
Doubts over Sainsbury’s are the only clouds on the horizon.
M&C Saatchi’s year was spectacular; reaching eighth place in two years
is unprecedented. Its growth will continue, but eyes will be fixed on
its uneven creative output.
JWT will be an agency to watch this year. It has already started to
improve on last year’s poor performance with the Mazda and Rimmel wins,
and its focus this year is on new business. The same can be said for a
resurgent Lowe Howard-Spink with Saab and the Express Group already in
Euro RSCG is also set to shine - landing the Abbey National business
without a pitch is a dream start to its year.
BBH will be anxious to bounce back from last year with new business, and
GGT must hope Trevor Beattie will make an impact. Grey, Bates Dorland,
McCann-Erickson and Ammirati Puris Lintas will be looking to halt their
slide down the table.
Of course, the league does not reflect the TBWA/ Simons Palmer and
Saatchis/ K Advertising mergers.
With many agencies re-porting significant billings increases, the
feeling is optimistic. However, this year, the recent spate of mergers
is likely to continue apace.