School Reports 2013: The7stars

Suzuki Cars
Suzuki Cars

Score: 7  Last year: 6

The7stars picked up a startling number of new accounts last year by any single agency’s standards. The most high-profile of the 24 wins came in the form of Suzuki Cars, which unseated the incumbent Nexus/H after 20 years, Jigsaw from KR Media, Warner Music from ZenithOptimedia, McArthurGlen, which was previously looked after by Carat, and Colombia Records. It lost just one account, Nuffield Health. The result is that the agency now has more accounts than it has staff.

Not afraid of investing in new ventures, the agency took a stake in the start-up The Village Communications, which is housed at the7stars’ offices on Dean Street and is building up its own roster of clients. The7stars also maintains its stake in Eden, its joint media agency with Adam & Eve/DDB, which services Phones4U.

On the talent front, the7stars hired Rocket’s Dino Myers-Lamptey as its first head of strategy to supplement its experienced and stable team.

The independent agency has steadily scaled the heights since it was founded in 2005. However, it seems fair to say that the7stars is better known for its new-business success and quality client service than top-level creative inspiration that will lead to industry trophies, though it did make some headway on this in 2012 when work for Phones 4u and the Art Fund was shortlisted for the Campaign Media Awards.

Should the7stars continue to create work in this vein, while growing at the rate it managed in 2012, then its immediate future seems assured.

Type of agency Media planning and buying
Company ownership Independent
Key personnel Jenny Biggam founding partner
Mark Jarvis founding partner
Gareth Jones partner
Dino Myers-Lamptey head of strategy
Liam Mullins head of trading
Nielsen billings 2012 £64m
Nielsen billings 2011 £56m
Declared income n/s
Total accounts at year end 65
Accounts won 24 (biggest: Suzuki Cars)
Accounts lost 1 (Nuffield Health)
TV 40%
Press 28%
Outdoor 8%
Radio 4%
Search 5%
Other 15%
Number of staff 58 (+48%)

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 The7stars rates itself: 7

"In 2012 we welcomed 24 new accounts and moved to new offices in Dean Street. Our growing digital, data and sponsorship teams contributed significantly to our clients’ business. Our work for Phones4u and ArtFund was shortlisted for Campaign Media Awards and as an agency we were shortlisted for Media Agency of the Year by both Media Week and Marketing magazine. And we launched our sister agency Village Communications, who are going from strength to strength."