School Reports 2015: Lowe Profero


Score: 6  Last year: n/a

Lowe Profero’s first 12 months as a going concern (Profero having been acquired by Interpublic in January 2014 and rolled into the Lowe and Partners network as its global digital arm) was one of apparent steady growth.

The merger meant a doubling of the shop’s client list, although there was some fallout when Marks & Spencer moved its account. However, the year ended on a high with the arrival of the Seat business.

Lowe Profero is sharing the account with DLKW Lowe, which will adapt Seat’s global outdoor, press and TV activity, leaving its sibling to work on the brand’s website, banner ads and social media.

Other wins included Amazon Payments, Syfy and Unilever spreads.

There was also some silverware to show that the quality of the work, and not just the new-business function, had survived the merger. Lowe Profero won the Grand Prix at the Brand Republic Digital Awards for Primark, the budget high-street retailer. It launched Primania, a "real-time fashion lookbook" put together by customers’ selfies.

On the structural side, Lowe Profero opened a new office in Chengdu – its fourth in China after Beijing, Shanghai and Hong Kong. Proof, if it were needed, that IPG is serious about making the network a credible one.

Having successfully filled a gap in Lowe’s credentials, Michael Wall, its chief executive, can look back at the acquisition with some satisfaction.

How the agency scores itself: 8

How the agency rates itself: 2014 was a big year. The excitement of becoming the global digital arm of Lowe was offset by the realignment of Marks & Spencer into WPP. However, winning 11 new clients, a 50 per cent pitch-win ratio, a raft of creative awards including the Grand Prix for Primark (Brand Republic), year-on-year revenue growth and record profits mean Lowe Profero had its most successful year to date. Moving to Lowe has proven to be a success.

Lowe Profero
Type of agency Full-service digital advertising
Company ownership Interpublic
Declared income £25m
Total accounts at year end 27
Accounts won 11 (biggest: Seat)
Accounts lost 1 (Marks & Spencer)
Number of staff 96 (n/a)
Key personnel Dale Gall chief executive
Ross Jenkins global managing director for media
Buster Dover managing director for comms
Eloise Smith executive creative director
Richard Prankerd chief operating officer

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.