Richard Flintham, 101's executive creative director and co-founder, left in April 2015 to pursue other interests. In Campaign's experience, that usually means a holiday, then a job at another agency – but it sounds legitimate in this case.
Augusto Sola relocated from Buenos Aires to take control of the creative department with Mark Elwood.
Neither has Flintham’s pedigree but the department will benefit from an injection of young blood, with Joe Bruce (a former Campaign Face To Watch) joining from Crispin Porter & Bogusky.
In March 2015, another co-founder, Laurence Green, wrote a piece in Campaign arguing that agencies were commoditising themselves by relying on pitches for new business. It’s a view that is unlikely to have changed after 101 lost out on the Twitter business to Lucky Generals.
Losses included an end to a project relationship with SABMiller and work for Vauxhall. Wins included a revitalisation brief from Odeon, which was worth about £3.5 million.
As for work, there was a campaign for Avios that used internet tracking to enable people to hound friends and relatives with personalised online ads begging them to share their air miles. 101 was also behind the strategy and design of the BBC Store, which launched in November.
101’s biggest campaign was for the 2014 win Tango – a brand with a rich ad history. The TV and online spot was about a belligerent Tango enthusiast called Rodney Cloomb.
The strategy and creative both felt right but the advertising did not hit a cultural vein in the way that the agency would have hoped – you could summarise 101’s year in much the same way.
How the agency rates itself: 7
"We’re proud to report double-digit growth and double-digit margin for the fourth consecutive year. Delighted to be recognised at the Campaign Big Awards, Marketing Society Excellence Awards and the APG Awards, among others. Flattered by our clients’ loyalty and our colleagues’ hard work and dedication."
|Type of agency||Advertising|
|Nielsen billings 2015||£21m|
|Nielsen billings 2014||£18m|
|Total accounts at year end||13|
|Accounts won||3 (biggest: Impossible)|
|Accounts lost||2 (biggest: Vauxhall)|
|Number of staff||50 (no change)|
|Key personnel||Laurence Green, founding partner
Phil Rumbol, founding partner
Mark Elwood, founding partner and creative director
Augusto Sola, partner and creative director
Steve Waring, founding partner
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.