Cordiant operation heads list of loss-making new-media outfits

The digital operations of Cordiant, Havas and Grey were among the ten worst-performing new-media companies in the UK, with an average loss of £47,260 per employee in the latest surveyed year.

Overall, the UK's top 25 new-media agencies, as determined by revenue, lost an average of £21,569 a year per staff member, according to data from Companies House.

The report, complied by the research company New Media Agencies Financial Intelligence, used the most recently available annual financial information, which, for most agencies, was filed for the year to the end of 2001.

CCG.XM, Cordiant's operation, which trades as XM London, topped the list of poor performers, with an operating loss of £70,856 per employee.

Grey Interactive ranked fourth and Havas Advertising's Zinc was eighth with losses of £48,811 and £22,113 per employee respectively.

The research found that new-media agencies backed by traditional advertising companies showed most financial control, with losses of £10,348 per member on average. Those backed by venture capital or IT companies posted an average loss of £28,653.

The most successful agency in terms of operating profit per employee was AKQA, the agency behind last year's Nike Europe campaign, with £24,058 profit per employee.

Havas' Arnold Interactive ranked second at £12,083. Modem Media (UK) and Zentropy Partners UK, both owned by Interpublic, ranked third and fourth respectively.

The fifth most-profitable agency was Profero, the independent planning and buying company, with WPP's Good Technology and Syzygy UK in seventh and eighth.