THE HIGHS AND LOWS OF 1999: Caroline Marshall surveys the year in which merger followed merger, Guinness ’surfer’ made a splash, a yellow furry animal revitalised Levi’s and the ad industry mourned the death of David Ogilvy



Bentley to BMP (luckily Martin Boase has been driving a Bentley for more

than 20 years) ... dollars 200 million US media business for Pfizer to

the independent Carat in a rare move for a US advertiser of real

size ... Bupa to WCRS from the Ogilvy group ... D’Arcy wins Matthew

Clark cider, spelling an end to Grey’s ’aliens with pointy heads’

monstrosity ... AMV confounds all by keeping the lion’s share of

Britain’s largest spending advertiser, BT, but M&C Saatchi triumphs in

the BT business pitch and St Luke’s wins the yoof brief ... M&C wins the

Sainsbury’s TV assignment following AMV’s ’value to shout about’

fiasco ... it caps a brilliant new-business year by picking up Rover’s

pounds 40 million UK account from APL ...

BSkyB to St Luke’s from M&C Saatchi ... Sega returns to WCRS for the

Dreamcast launch ... NTL asks JWT to make it a household name ... Leo

Burnett wins Heinz lead UK agency position from Bates ... Roose &

Partners wins Mitsubishi from RPM3 ... Lowe wins the Cannes film Grand

Prix for The Independent’s ’litany’ film ... TBWA nets the poster Grand

Prix for its Sony PlayStation ’nipples’ spot ... Mother lands pounds 10

million HFC credit card task ... WCRS scoops pounds 30 million worth of

Rover business covering the European launch of the Rover 25 and 45 ...

the Dutch airline, KLM, also opts for WCRS ... as does Anchor butter ...

Sony’s pounds 50 million pan-European work goes to Saatchis from DDB

Needham Worldwide ... McKinsey & Company hires O&M to create a global

branding campaign ... McCann wins dollars 50 million Deutsche Bank

assignment ... JWT beats BMP to the internet bank, First-e ... Delta Air

Lines to Leo Burnett globally ... AMV lands the pounds 50 million

quit-smoking task.


Barclays Bank removes its pounds 18 million business from JWT and hands

it to Leagas Delaney ... P&G ditches Euro RSCG Worldwide from its global

agency roster, a week after Euro acquired Jordan McGrath Case &

Partners, known for its, um, domestic P&G business ... Saatchis loses Bhs

to Duckworth Finn ... FCB loses Kimberly-Clark’s global tissues

assignment to JWT ... Lowes loses its key global client, UDV, to JWT

which wins Smirnoff, Malibu and Baileys ... Nestle strips its roster

agency, Publicis, of the global Nescafe business, appoints McCann, but

keeps its dire ’open up’ campaign ... Anchor fires Saatchis ... and the

Department of Health reviews its pounds 5 million nurses recruitment

task out of Charlotte Street too ... BBJ loses Volkswagen’s pounds 80

million centralised media planning and buying account to MediaCom ...

food retailer, Somerfield, the ’client from hell’, sacks Leo Burnett

after four months and opts for McCann - then three months later goes

into review again ... McCann loses the US tyre maker, Goodyear, to

Leagas Delaney after 40 years ... Cussons leaves Bates.


A thousand e-commerce ventures ... Omnicom launches Optimum Media

Direction in the UK ... Melody FM is reborn as Magic FM ... BMP DDB and

Claydon Heeley launch a DM shop, Jones Mason Barton Antenen ... Armando

Testa, Deutsch and Springer & Jacoby open in London ... Y&R Media Europe

is reborn as the Media Edge Europe ... the Cannes festival introduces a

new category, Media Lions ... the Campaign Direct Awards ... and a

spin-off title aimed at the media sales sector, Campaign Media

Business ... AMV’s first breakaway in its 21-year history, Miles

Calcraft Briginshaw Duffy ... Eve Pollard opens Parkhill ... JWT

launches a planning consultancy, @JWT ... DMB&B is reborn as D’Arcy ...

Emap Elan makes its travel debut with Escape Routes ... the Ogilvy group

is reborn as Ogilvy ... Barclay Knapp’s NTL plus the cable franchises of

Cable & Wireless Communications creates the UK’s biggest cable

company ... Talk, the ferociously hyped US celebrity magazine fronted by

Tina Brown.


BBH’s Levi’s Sta-Prest revival campaign featuring Angel and his cultish

furry companion, Flat Eric (pause here for remembrance of hamsters and

bare bottoms past) ... Mother’s three debut ads for Magic FM - if they

didn’t make you smile, you should get out more ... DMB&B’s ads for the

Fiat Punto ... BBH’s continuing ’don’t be a prat, drive an Audi’

campaign ... AMV’s Yellow Pages ad where the young dude who hasn’t

tidied his flat in years is told it’s been trashed by a worried

neighbour ... JWT’s charming shorter length ’have a break’ ads for Kit

Kat ... and its fantasy dinner party spot for After Eight ... the

Guinness ’surfer’ ad by AMV - the music’s brilliant, the effects

staggering and, shock horror, it actually works as a piece of

advertising ... Saatchis’ NSPCC Full Stop campaign ... Tony Kaye

directing Joan Collins (plus wrinkles) in Lowe’s Olympus I Zoom 75

spot ... Burnett’s ad lampooning old-fashioned curry house ads for

McDonald’s ... M&C Saatchi’s BA film in which the American satirist, PJ

O’Rourke, gently takes the piss out of us Brits for not being prouder of

our national flag carrier ... Saatchis putting the XXXX back into XXXX

with the Castlemaine spot showing a couple at it in bed, she’s clearly

married to someone else but her lover couldn’t possibly drink his mate’s

beer ... Fallon McElligott’s work for Nando’s, the fast food chain,

about not eating eggs so they can grow into chickens ... AMV’s

typographic posters for Guinness Extra Cold ... BMP’s new animated ad

for Compaq’s Alta Vista search engine in which a determined blackbird,

acting uncannily like a search engine, tracks down a worm.


The adland visionary, David Ogilvy, dies at the age of 88 at his chateau

in France ... Sir Leo Pliatzky, 79, who initiated a seminal investigation

into the commercials production business in 1984 ... IPC’s Options ...

Smith Jones Campbell - formerly Smith Jones Brown & Cassie - the

production company started by Mel Smith and Griff Rhys Jones in 1988 ...

BSkyB announces it is to switch off its analogue transmission signal

from the end of 2002, and gives away set-top decoders to sweeten the

pill ... Renegade, formed to entice companies that want PR and

marketing, advice, folds after not winning enough business; ’there’s a

gap in the market,’ they say, ’but we’re not sure if there’s a market in

the gap’ ... Emap Elan’s Parents magazine bites the dust - proving that

most parents would rather learn on the job than read how to do it ...

JWT’s Oxo family eats its last supper - after 42 commercials ... P&G,

the world’s biggest advertiser, drops the commission system.


St Luke’s ’full speed ahead’ campaign for The Express - still not

revealed as a joke but we live in hope ... FCA!’s mysterious spot for

Action 2000 starring the man with no eyes and no mouth ... Grey’s poster

for Mars’ Starburst depicting three images of a girl playing tennis,

three pairs of knickers showing, one decorated with strawberries and the

line ’Get your juices going’ ... CDP’s bewildering Swindon campaign for

Honda - does anyone care that the Honda Civic is built in Swindon, a

’nice place to live’?

No, the entire concept seemed a bit thin ... the Renault Scenic Sound of

Music pastiche from Publicis featuring a Julie Andrews-type dancing away

with her charges as the Scenic (’a fun car for active people’) rolls

down the hill ... Partners BDDH’s too-subtle cinema commercial for The

Guardian showing the man going into an old-fashioned barber’s for a

shave. Barber sharpens cut-throat razor. DJ on radio plays Stuck in the

Middle with You by Steelers Wheel.

Customer doesn’t make any excuses and leaves ... O&M’s Bollywood pastiche

for The Observer - three cheers for Mark Wnek’s verdict in Private View:

’The most baffling waste of money since Pamela Anderson’s chest

reduction’ ... JWT’s debut advertising for Smirnoff Red disappoints after

the consistently brilliant work that Lowe Howard-Spink produced before

losing the business.


Leagas Delaney ditches Nationwide in January following the revelation

that the building society was talking to other shops. It is the second

time that client and agency have split under acrimonious circumstances;

in 1994, Leagas learned the account was moving to GGT from

Campaign ... True North and Publicis play out the dying days of their

stormy global marriage in the courts as TN files a lawsuit to regain the

dollars 60 million it claims to be out of pocket because of the

split ... GQ’s editor, James Brown, is fired from Conde Nast following an

article in which Field Marshal Rommel and the Nazis make the ’most

stylish men of the century’ list ... Interpublic issues a writ against

Marvin Sloves, the former account man who ran the dollars 125 million

Mercedes business at Lowe & Partners/SMS in New York before it moved to

Omnicom’s Merkley Newman Harty ... RHM client, Paul Wilkinson, launches

a scathing attack on agencies that ignore local advertisers in their

search for global accounts ... Propaganda’s US commercials division

head, Steve Dickstein, is ousted following the company’s buyout by Gary

Beer, the former Sundance Films chief ... Tories accuse Labour of using

taxpayers’ money to fund party propaganda after government spending on

advertising soars by 79 per cent in a year to break the pounds 100

million barrier.


Bruce Mason retires from True North ... as does John Hackney from Rose

Hackney Barber after 18 years ... Tom Bury parts with O&M after a year

which saw the loss of Guinness, Bupa and lead status on Ford ... Billy

Mawhinney quits Euro RSCG after less than a year for Faulds ... Amanda

Platell as editor of The Express on Sunday ... the Mirror Group chief

executive, David Montgomery, exits as Trinity takeover nears ... Sammy

Harari quits Travis Sully Harari to go travelling ... Mike Perry leaves

Wieden & Kennedy ten months after spearheading its launch in the UK ...

HHCL founder, Adam Lury, retires from advertising at 42 ... Queen Lyndy

Payne retires from the AAR ... Carol Reay quits Grey citing breach of

contract ... Naresh Ramchandani quits St Luke’s, saying the place has

become ’too corporate’ ... Marilyn Baxter from Saatchis to Hall &

Partners ... John Bartle retires from BBH after 17 years ... the

ONdigital chief, Stephen Grabiner, exits amid reports of a personality

clash with Michael Green, and resurfaces at eVentures ... William

Eccleshare leaves APL following its merger with Lowe ... Patrick

Collister leaves O&M to open a ’creativity training centre’ from his

house in Kent.


’A woman’s breasts, the word sex and a naughty anagram that wouldn’t

stretch the intelligence of a house brick’ - a letter in Campaign on

that fcuk subliminal advertising poster ...

Saatchis’ ad for the NSPCC showing images of childhood with a soundtrack

of unseen adults abusing children draws 150 complaints from viewers who

found it distressing and offensive; the ITC allows it to continue ...

TBWA’s ad for Pretty Polly bras showing heaving bosoms (what else can

they show in a bra ad?) draws flak from 43 viewers but is also allowed

to continue thanks to its deliberate ’seaside postcard’ tone ... the ASA

carpets Diadora, the sportswear manufacturer, over a poster showing a

bruised and battered football referee bound and gagged in the boot of a

car ... on the subject of the ASA, the BBC’s top administrator,

Christopher Graham, has been chosen to succeed Matti Alderson as

director-general when Alderson steps down next year.


IPC makes 200 redundancies as part of a drastic restructure designed to

realise annual savings of around pounds 6 million ... Chris Evans’

Virgin radio is fined pounds 10,000 for broadcasting a photographer’s

mobile phone number and urging listeners to ’hound him until he goes

toes up’ ... JC Decaux failed to buy the More Group in 1997 but in 1998

buys Avenir for pounds 650 million ... Martin Sorrell’s WPP launches a

US-style platinum-level incentive scheme to reward about 15 senior

executives across the group; the chosen few invest money in shares in

the scheme and stand to share a pay-out of dollars 100 million or more

in five years - as the WPP share price rockets, it costs them more to

participate ... the Ford roster shop, Y&R, buys Rainey Kelly Campbell

Roalfe in a deal estimated to be worth more than pounds 25 million; it

puts Rainey Kelly’s management in charge of Y&R London and costs the

Vauxhall Astra account ... the FCB and Bozell networks merge, costing

FCB’s European chairman, Tony Douglas, and countless others their jobs

but saving parent True North dollars 20 million - and setting the stage

perhaps for a further acquisition? ... Lowe and Lintas merge for the

same reasons.


Muhammad Ali steps back into the ring for TBWA’s Equitable Life

commercial ... Denise Van Outen fronts the first TV ad for the

van-maker, LDV ... AMV rather impudently teams the boxers, Prince Naseem

and Henry Cooper for Pizza Hut, Our ’Enry having roundly slagged off

Prince Naseem in the papers ... AMV also turns Gary Lineker into the

soccer hardman, Vinnie Jones, for Walkers Crisps ... Robbie Williams

sports a pair of false breasts to make his advertising debut for the

Institute of Cancer Research’s Everyman campaign ... George Best signs

up for D’Arcy’s Littlewoods Pools poster blitz.


Martina King leaves Capital Radio for the TV sales house, TSMS, and then

moves again to Yahoo! ... Carl - ’I’m very competitive and I like to feel

stretched’ - Johnson leaves TBWA London to run TBWA Chiat/Day New

York ...

Graham Watson leaves BBH to be head of art at Lowe Sydney ... Tony Cox to

’elder statesman’ creative role at AMV after a decade at BMP ... Bozell’s

chief executive, David Bell, succeeds his old friend, Bruce Mason, as

True North chief ... OgilvyOne to Canary Wharf ...

Kelly O’Dea (aka Belly O’Sway) leaves O&M, ’rests’, then joins Bozell

Worldwide in an international role ...

Alfredo Marcantonio to DMB&B from Interpublic ... Hugh Derrick leaves AMV

to join Wieden & Kennedy as managing director and vows to take ’a more

positive approach to PR’ - anyone heard of W&K London yet? ... Mike

Smallwood resurfaces as Flextech’s head of marketing ... Jane Proctor

resigns from Tatler’s editor’s chair after a row with Nicholas

Coleridge, and Geordie Greig arrives from The Sunday Times to replace

her ... Greg Dyke emerges triumphant in the rather grubby race for the BBC

director-generalship ... he pips Richard Eyre, ITV’s chief executive, who

subsequently moves to Pearson TV ...

Tiger Savage from Leagas Delaney to M&C Saatchi as head of art ... Michael

Baulk moves to chair BBDO’s European operations ... previous incumbent

David Wheldon takes a year out then re-emerges as CIA’s chief

executive ... Army client Col Rory Clayton joins Saatchis to set up a

special unit to help companies raise staff morale ... Doug Flynn, News

International managing director, takes the chief executive position at

Aegis Group ... while Crispin Davis switches to chief executive of Reed

Elsevier ... Boris Johnson succeeds Frank Johnson as editor of The

Spectator ... Steve Dunn to O&M as creative director, succeeding Patrick



The OFT examines the size and definition of the outdoor market ... the

permission system confronting advertisers wanting to use images of the

Royal Family is brought up to date; it is no longer necessary to get

permission from the Lord Chamberlain’s office, just from ’the

appropriate authority’ such as Buckingham Palace ... everyone quakes as

Sweden makes noises about using its EU presidency from 2001 to extend

its own ban on advertising to children ... a judge dismisses the wrangle

between Electrolux and Dyson over their comparative advertising claims,

but declares both guilty of infringing each other’s trademark because

their ’dishonest claims’ lost them legal protection ... market

researchers get tough on ’focus group groupies’ who are prepared to tell

them anything for a fee; they could face prosecution for deception ... a

wave of legislation covering everything from unfair dismissal to sexual

harassment forces agencies to review their cavalier attitude to

employment law.


’He’d push his granny out of the way to get his face on the front of

Campaign.’ Mark Denton, co-founder of Simons Palmer, on Paul Simons

’He’s an impatient, restless worrier and he thrives on bad news ... I

genuinely feel that you don’t have a relationship with him, you have a

series of encounters.’ JWT’s worldwide chief executive, Chris Jones, on

Martin Sorrell

’I think I’ve grown up and calmed down a bit.’ Martin Sorrell

’I’m terrible for saying our pitch presentation is OK and we should all

go home.’ BMP’s Chris Powell

’She’s useless - any other agency would be mad if they even contemplated

hiring her.’ BMP’s planning director, Nigel Jones, tries to prevent

rivals from poaching Face to Watch Lucy Jameson, 27 - it worked, she’s

still there

’Eughh! Hah hah hah, that’s a tricky one. My favourite ad? ... I

think ... probably ... um ... ’ Roy Bostock, chairman and chief executive of

the MacManus group, when asked to name his favourite ad

’Sexual harassment is a very popular topic in the US. Now True North has

invented a new game called judicial harassment.’ The Publicis chairman,

Maurice Levy, on the dollars 60 million lawsuit brought against the

French group by its erstwhile partner

’Expecting me to be nice about these ads is tantamount to asking Freddie

Kruger to try his hand at balloon sculpture’ Mark Wnek in Private


’Mason thinks we come from the third world. We may be good enough to

choose the wine for his table but not to sit at it.’ Maurice Levy on

Bruce Mason

’A psychiatrist would probably say I have an inferiority complex.’

Optimum Media Direction’s Daryl Simm on what drives him

’No! Hah hah hah hah!’ DDB Worldwide’s chief executive, Keith Reinhard,

replies to the question: ’Does Daryl Simm have power over you when it

comes to media decisions?’

’I can’t stop them coming in, three or four a week, from all over the

place ... ’ O&M Worldwide’s chief executive, Shelly Lazarus, on the

hundreds of toy frogs which decorate her office

’I left advertising in 1983 because I was fed up with flogging my guts

out trying to find ways to promote products that were, quite often, a

stack of crap in the first place.’ Richard Seymour, designer and D&AD


’It’s been great to start with a blank sheet of paper. To merge the

agencies, we didn’t have to worry about the incumbents in the senior

roles, and shaved pounds 1 million off the overheads without even

trying.’ Bates UK’s vice chairman, Graham Green, demonstrates his

legendary people skills

’When people are watching TV they see adverts but they are not really

watching them.’ Nationwide client and FA sponsor, Mike Lazenby, explains

his switch from advertising to sponsorship

’It’s a strange country that allows women and animals to do

unmentionable things to each other in movies but won’t allow its

nine-year-olds to watch a Lego ad.’ The IPA president, Rupert Howell, on

the Swedes

’What we have here is a classic case of American arrogance.’ Rupert

Howell on DMB&B’s - sorry, D’Arcy’s - global restructure

’Heekin is punchy and functional. Not great table manners, if you know

what I mean.’ A ’source’ on Jim Heekin, the new worldwide head of the

McCann-Erickson network

’Editing Tatler might be compared to riding a Bugatti - a fabulously

designed classic vehicle with plenty of speed, gripping power, beauty,

sex appeal and an eclectic range of glamorous people in the passenger

seat coming along for the ride.’ Geordie Greig, Tatler’s new editor

’Clients are not interested in what we’re saying. It’s become like a

World War One battle.’ Disillusioned Bates Dorland account man, Adam

Kirby, quits advertising

’I don’t know if there’s anyone out there reading this who’s old enough

to remember advertising. I’m talking about the old days, when the job

was to sell things. Ages ago. Before the only job of planners was to get

us to empathise with the target audience. Before art directors and

copywriters became designers and TV producers. Even before the target

audience for everything we do became 12 people on an awards jury.’ Dave

Trott rants in Private View

’Michael is a wily fox and if anybody can do it, he can.’ David Wheldon,

former BBDO European president, on Michael Baulk, the new chairman of

BBDO’s European network

’We’re the newest members of the older generation and we won’t grow old

gracefully. We’ve money to spend and there’s more of us to come. So why

is advertising excluding us?’ Campaign’s John Tylee strikes a chord ’You

won’t find any dirt on me. I’m the Cliff Richard of advertising.’ John

Hackney on John Hackney

’It’s hard telling shops they haven’t won the business. Some get so

distraught they have to ring you back once they’ve calmed down.’ Britvic

marketing chief Andrew Marsden

’Every time that I’ve expressed an opinion in this magazine, it’s pissed

somebody off.’ The late great Steve Rabosky of APL bids farewell to his

many UK fans.

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