School Reports 2014: Rapp

Virgin Media
Virgin Media

Score: 5  Last year: 7

A year of progress for Rapp, which won a clutch of new accounts, made some senior hires and tried to create greater integration between its different businesses (data, creative and media).

Rapp’s biggest new-client win was Christie’s global CRM business. It also won accounts with Mothercare, BBC Worldwide, Sanofi, Google AdWords, VisitBritain and The agency’s European CRM brief for the hotel group Best Western expanded to include international work. Its top-spending accounts remained Virgin Media, AkzoNobel and Barclays.

But it lost the digital business for Bacardi, which wanted to consolidate the work for its biggest brands into a single agency and switch its digital focus from websites to social media. The account went to Rapp’s sister agency Weapon7 (and has since been moved to Proximity).

Despite an overall decrease in staff numbers over the year, Rapp made some mid-level hires, including: the data and CRM strategy director, Tina Christison; the return of the creative directors Rich Donovan and Jon Leney from Partners Andrews Aldridge; the poaching of Mindshare’s director of SEO, Nik Gohil, as the head of SEO; and the promotion of the managing partner, John Perkins, to managing director. 

Perkins replaced Sam Nolan, who had become the chief client officer at the end of 2012. It also hired Marcus Kirsch as the innovation director.

This February, Rapp handed creative control of all three of its business units (data, media and creative) to the executive creative director, Jason Andrews, after the chief creative officer, Rik Haslam, headed to the US. This expanded remit demonstrates an increasing client demand for integration across the different businesses.

There was some solid work, including the launch of for Dulux, as well as campaigns for Barclaycard and Virgin Media. Let’s hope that the progress continues into 2014.

How Rapp rates itself: 8

Rapp's year in a Tweet: Media, data, creative and technology continued to drive growth, talent and awards. Client wins centred on innovation and future trends.

Type of agency Integrated creative, data and media
Company ownership Omnicom
Key personnel Marco Scognamiglio chief executive, UK
Ian Haworth chairman, UK
Samantha Nolan chief client officer
Jason Andrews executive creative director
Gavin Hilton planning director
Nielsen billings 2013 £24m
Nielsen billings 2012 £22m
Declared income £40.4m (2012)
Total accounts at year end 47
Accounts won 8 (biggest: Christie’s)
Accounts lost 1 (Bacardi)
Number of staff 346 (-13%)

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

Footnote: *indicates where agencies claim the corporate governance constraints of the Sarbanes-Oxley legislation.