School Reports 2013: Rapp


Score: 7  Last year: 7

While Rapp might have had a tricky start to 2012 after having to make a round of redundancies, the rest of the year was spent on an upward trajectory as the agency looked to shake off its solid, even slightly lacklustre, image.

While this might be a challenge for an agency that employs nearly 400 staff, it seems to be making significant inroads.

Marco Scognamiglio, the chief executive, has assembled a strong team that is pushing the agency into new areas. Rapp’s chief creative officer, Rik Haslam, has injected more life into the creative department with the appointment of the executive creative director, Jason Andrews, from Geronimo as well as six associate creative director hires.

The standard of Rapp’s work has improved and it seems as strong on integrated or digital ground as any agency in London. An engaging Facebook app for Bacardi allowed consumers to have a night to remember and increased the brand’s fans by 500 per cent, while the agency also created notable work for Virgin Media and Cancer Research UK.

New-business momentum built towards the end of the year with wins for Dulux and the Barclays consolidated £12 million direct marketing account, with both brands becoming two of the agency’s top-spending clients.

However, it wasn’t all plain sailing as Rapp lost its advertising and media planning and buying accounts for NSPCC, previously one of the agency’s highest-spending clients.

After demonstrating its digital prowess, Rapp no longer deserves to be seen as a slow-paced direct dinosaur. Should it continue to improve its creative output, alongside a strong new-business performance, 2013 could be another defining year.

Type of agency Full-service integrated direct/digital
Company ownership Omnicom
Key personnel Marco Scognamiglio chief executive
Ian Haworth global creative officer and UK chairman
Samantha Nolan chief client officer
Rik Haslam chief creative officer
Russell Marsh chief strategy officer
Nielsen billings 2012 £30m
Nielsen billings 2011 £4m
Declared income £38.9m (2011)
Total accounts at year end 56
Accounts won 6 (biggest: Dulux)
Accounts lost 1 (NSPCC)
Number of staff 397 (-5%)

Score key: 9 Outstanding 8 Excellent 7 Good 6 Satisfactory 5 Adequate 4 Below average 3 Poor 2 A year to forget 1 Survival in question

How Rapp rates itself: 9

"2012 was an outstanding year. RAPP won multiple creative awards for digital and traditional work as well as achieving impressive growth through new business and client development. RAPP was appointed as Dulux’s global digital agency and Barclays’ UK DM agency, at the same time landing additional business from Bacardi, Barclaycard and Virgin Media. In response, we strengthened our senior team with Jason Andrews arriving as executive creative director and Patrick Shine as UX director."