Leagas Delaney plans to cut its ties with its parent, the Abbott
Mead Vickers group. It has hired a management consultant to value the
business in preparation for buy out.
Bruce Haines, Leagas Delaney’s chief executive, and Tim Delaney, a
founding partner and the creative director, are believed to have
discussed the buy out with Peter Mead, AMV’s group chairman, and Michael
Baulk, the chief executive.
The catalyst for the buy out was Leagas Delaney’s win of an
international project for Coca-Cola’s Fanta last October. BBDO, which
owns 26 per cent of AMV, handles the Pepsi account worldwide and it was
unlikely the rival cola giants could be handled by two closely-related
However, both Haines and Delaney are known to have wanted to buy the
agency, once an independent shop, for some time and be more than just
salaried employees of AMV.
Leagas Delaney is understood to have hired a KPMG accountant to put a
price on the company, and a corporate lawyer. He is seeking backers to
finance the purchase.
It is unclear whether the agency will exist as a standalone shop or link
up with another network. Haines and Delaney are known to have had
conversations with two international agency networks, one of which is
thought to be WPP.
Leagas Delaney won a place on the coveted Coca-Cola roster in October
last year (Campaign, 25 October) after a pitch for Fanta against
Publicis and DMB&B. The agency’s first work for the soft drink is
expected to break later this month.
Leagas Delaney was launched in 1980 by Tim Delaney and Ron Leagas. The
agency opened its first overseas office last year in San Francisco.