The UK poster industry could be facing one of the biggest shake-ups
in its history, following the action of a small poster contractor
against the industry’s largest buying operation this week.
Baillie Outdoor Advertising, one of the larger poster contractors in
Scotland, has decided to cease trading with Posterscope, the number one
poster-buying specialist in the UK, because of concerns over the
specialist’s buying practices.
The move has implications not only for the poster medium, but also for
the media industry generally, where additional commissions paid by media
owners to media buyers can be an important part of the trading
Graeme Baillie, a director of Baillie Outdoor, said that his company was
concerned that ’the taking of additional commissions could influence the
buying process’ and that, with immediate effect, Baillie had ceased
dealing with Posterscope.
According to Baillie, taking additional commissions could ’in certain
circumstances be illegal’.
Annie Rickard, chief executive and managing director of Posterscope,
said: ’As far as we are concerned, Baillie Outdoor controls about 8 per
cent of the larger format roadside market in Scotland. We cannot justify
spending more than about 5 per cent of our Scotland budgets with
However, the row follows frequent calls from some poster contractors for
a clean-up of the market. Francis Goodwin, joint managing director of
Maiden Outdoor, said: ’The whole area of additional commissions warrants
close attention by all parties. If wrongly used, these commissions can
be a distortion of the marketplace.’