School Reports 2015: Ogilvy & Mather


Score: 6  Last year: 6

For many years, Ogilvy & Mather has had to read the same old concerns in its school reports. Most of them are an unintended by-product of the agency serving as the UK arm of a successful global network, a solid international partner for clients such as BP, American Express and IBM. The continuing issue for successive UK management teams is that they have limited power over the international portion of the business, thus much of their agency.

The best counter to this concern is winning more local business. And, in 2014, O&M picked up some decent bits of work, winning Pizza Hut delivery, Pimm’s and Optegra. Not a bad start, but not enough to threaten Adam & Eve/DDB, DLKW Lowe and McCann at the top of the new-business table. Moreover, despite putting on a good show, O&M lost out on the Post Office account and failed to convert any government pitches in 2014.

However, things are going in the right direction. O&M’s already strong team, led by the pensive Cheryl Giovannoni, will only benefit from the appointment of Annette King, the chief executive of OgilvyOne EAME, as the chief executive of Ogilvy Group UK. OgilvyOne has long outperformed its sibling and King’s energy and strategic management nous will be welcome.

As will the move from Canary Wharf to Sea Containers House on London’s South Bank, which is tabled for later this year.

O&M had a steady 2014. Giovannoni and King will be hoping for more in 2015. With a management team settled in and new offices closer to cultural inspiration, they might just get it.

How the agency scores itself: 6

How the agency rates itself: Creativity and effectiveness were the standout themes, with multiple awards for clients including Expedia, Dove and Amnesty – a perfect example of our twin-peaks strategy of creativity and effectiveness in play. We added Pimm’s, Pizza Hut delivery and Optegra to our client roster. The London office was the most-awarded in the entire Ogilvy network, resulting in Ogilvy’s hat-trick as Cannes’ Network of the Year.

Ogilvy & Mather
Type of agency Creative
Company ownership WPP
Nielsen billings 2014 £126m
Nielsen billings 2013 £126m
Declared income n/s*
Total accounts at year end 26
Accounts won 3 (biggest: Pizza Hut delivery)
Accounts lost 0
Number of staff 290 (+1%)
Key personnel Cheryl Giovannoni chief executive
Gerry Human chief creative officer
Rebecca Moody chief strategy officer
Mark Lainas chief innovation 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.