School Reports 2018
[Extended edition]
St Luke’s

St Luke’s

Type of agency & ownership:  Independent full-service agency and brand consultancy
Nielsen billings 2017: £61m (-3%)
Declared income: £5.5m
Total accounts at year end: 14
Accounts won: 7 (biggest: Genius)
Accounts lost: 8 (biggest: On the Beach)
Number of staff: 50 (-9%)
Key personnel: Neil Henderson, chief executive; Al Young, chief creative officer; Julian Vizard, creative partner; Dan Hulse, chief strategy officer; Richard Denney, executive creative director
Star player: Ed Palmer, managing director

Year in review

It has been a solid enough year for St Luke’s, which continues to be a healthy independent on the scene. Declared income inched down from £5.6m to £5.5m, while staff numbers also slipped by five to 50.

The agency won seven clients, but parted company with eight. To be fair, the losses were mostly small, one-off projects that came to a natural end, rather than retained relationships. The biggest loss was travel company On the Beach, with billings of £1m.

Wins in 2017 included gluten-free food brand Genius, plus Heineken’s Birra Moretti and Maltsmith. The latter account was handed to the agency by the brewer after it had impressed on the Birra Moretti pitch.

St Luke’s also diversified its client base, snaring tech start-ups Gett Together and cryptocurrency DasCoin. For the former, St Luke’s has been briefed to help the taxi-hailing app build a visible brand in the UK and explain its unique fixed-route proposition, while for DasCoin it handled the global branding and launch.

Standout work included a TV ad in what may turn out to be a farewell for Aunt Bessie’s Mabel and Margaret, who stormed off in protest at the idea of Veg Chips, and a film starring Bill Nighy, for the Jo Cox Foundation, encouraging people to tackle everyday loneliness.

The agency will no doubt be looking to new executive creative director Richard Denney, who joined from MullenLowe in July, to boost its creative firepower further. Of the 14 accounts St Luke’s holds, 11 are project-based, so one ambition for 2018 must surely be to add to its retained clients.

Agency's Year In A Tweet

"Client list from heaven #allkillernofiller"


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

Business performance and accounts

Gross income

Latest: £5.7m
Previous: £5.5m
Change: 2.4%

Operating profit

Latest: £1.3m
Previous: £1.7m
Change: -22.3%

List of total accounts






Heineken Old Mout

Aunt Bessie’s

Genius Free From



Heineken Birra Moretti

Heineken Maltsmiths


Pol Roger


Jo Cox Foundation

Top three spending accounts: (£48.2m)

Littlewoods (£17.2m)

Heineken Old Mout (n/s)

Number of retained accounts: 3
Number of accounts that are projects: 11
Biggest win: Genius (£2m)
Biggest loss: On the Beach (£1m)



Haymarket award wins