School Reports 2012: Albion

Having established itself as one of the more exciting and agile agencies in the industry, Albion used 2011 to advance its business proposition.

Recent work for Wonga
Recent work for Wonga

Score: 7

Agency fact file: Albion
Type of agency Creative
Company ownership Independent
Key personnel Jason Goodman partner and chief executive
  Nick Darken partner and executive creative director
  Glyn Britton partner
  Sasha Orr partner
  Susie Macarthur partner
Nielsen billings 2011 £18m
Nielsen billings 2010 £10m
Declared income £6.1m (year ended 31 July)
Total accounts at year end 22
Accounts won 13 (biggest: Aviva)
Accounts lost 4 (biggest: Charities Aid Foundation)
Number of staff 68 (+5%)

In March, the agency - driven by the industrious chief executive, Jason Goodman - opened its doors overseas for the first time, launching in Los Angeles. The office opened with Air New Zealand as its founding client and has already made an impression with a cheeky new campaign for the brand.

Closer to home, Albion also launched a new direct marketing agency, Albion Cell, which it billed as a "data marketing company for the next generation". Clients already on board include Jetsetter, and the Financial Times.

Albion also found time to fight for new business for the main agency, and was successful on a number of occasions. New clients included Aviva, GLL, JustGiving and However, it wasn't all one-way traffic, with the agency saying goodbye to Betfair, Airmiles and Cafedirect, all of which put their business up for review during the year. On each occasion, Albion rejected the chance to repitch.

On the creative front, work for Absolute Radio, Unum and Jose Cuervo stood out and underlined Albion's ambition to innovate and push the technological boundaries. The creative department was also enhanced with the hiring of the former Saatchi & Saatchi copywriter Michael Campbell, who joined as a creative director.

There were changes at senior management level too, with Saatchi & Saatchi New York's Sasha Orr coming in as a managing partner. Orr effectively replaces Liz Wilson, who left to join CMW as its chief executive.

Albion has established itself as a forward-thinking, entrepreneurial agency and a successful 2011 did nothing but enhance that reputation.

Score last year: 8

How Albion rates itself: 8

"We created high-profile, large-scale campaigns for major brands. OK Go pop-up gigs in Brazil for Cuervo tequila. Global online launch campaign for Air New Zealand's Economy 'Skycouch'. Wonga TV spots in The X Factor final. O2's Giffgaff won best new brand at the Marketing Society Awards. We continued to innovate, developing and owning product IP for Shotcast and SwearJar, launched two new businesses, hired major talent and maintained strong margins."

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