School Reports 2018
[Extended edition]


Type of agency & ownership:  Digital agency, owned by Publicis Groupe
Nielsen billings 2017: n/s
Declared income: n/s
Total accounts at year end: 22
Accounts won: 5 (biggest: n/s)
Accounts lost: 0
Number of staff: 89 (+11%)
Key personnel: Guy Wieynk, chief executive, Publicis UK and Western Europe; Nick Farnhill, founding partner and chief executive; Nicolas Roope, founding partner and executive creative director; Tom Hostler, founding and client partner; Tom Bayliss, managing director
Star player: Our collective front-of-house team at 82 Baker Street

Year in review

If anyone had doubted the ability of Poke to retain its enterprising, independent spirit in the close embrace of Publicis UK, they have surely been proved wrong. In the year that Nick Farnhill stepped up to assume leadership of Publicis London, Poke has continued to fire on all cylinders.

Fresh from picking up Heineken’s global digital account, the agency cites five new-business wins in 2017 (most of which it can’t or won’t talk about) – including the retained global business for Nestlé’s Pure Life water – and a 100% client-retention rate as evidence of continued momentum.

Poke’s first work for Heineken, "No more excuses", was a triumph, using the acerbic wit of Manchester United manager Jose Mourinho to chide football fans on social media for finding reasons not to watch midweek Uefa Champions League games with friends.

Sport has become something of a specialism for Poke, in light of its successful Wembley Cup initiative for EE, now in its third year. Moreover, it was the agency’s work with the International Olympic Committee to promote the PyeongChang 2018 Games that really set its year alight. By converting physical activity into the energy required to illuminate refugee camps, the agency found a brilliantly innovative way to bring to life the IOC’s mission to "build a better world through sport". It may be the best piece of work Poke has ever done.

With Farnhill’s time increasingly dominated by the broader Publicis picture, and Nik Roope adding global creative digital lead duties for Heineken, the promotion of Tom Bayliss to managing director signalled a change of guard at the top of an agency in a very good place.

Agency's Year In A Tweet

"An Olympic sized, stadium busting, robot building, celebrity wrangling, business launching type of year."


Score this year: 8
Score last year: 7
How the agency scores itself: 8
Management strength: 9
Creativity: 8
Innovation: 8
New business: 7
Diversity: 6

Business performance and accounts

Gross income

Latest: n/s
Previous: n/s
Change: n/s

Operating profit

Latest: n/s
Previous: n/s
Change: n/s

List of total accounts EE


Heineken Digital (Global)

Here East

Nestlé, Nestlé Pure Life Global









Ted Baker

Turnbull & Asser


Top three spending accounts:

EE (n/s)

Heineken Digital - Global (n/s)


Number of retained accounts: 7
Number of accounts that are projects: 15
Biggest win: n/s
Biggest loss: n/s



Haymarket award wins