BBDO took the most awarded network accolade ahead of TBWA, while the gap between the US and the UK at the top was greater than ever. Claire Beale reports.

After a year of red-carpeting, awards-clutching and tearful speech-making, the world's most creative agencies and their clients have one final accolade to covet: being the best in the world.

Taking gold at any of the 32 top awards shows around the globe this year is a career-making coup. But for this year's advertising Olympians, winning more of these awards than any other agency, advertiser or network is the most potent achievement of all.

The Gunn Report adds up the winners from the key creative awards ceremonies across the 17 most important advertising markets - those markets where any aspiring creative network must be a player. The results (based on a formula the details of which remain a closely guarded secret) reveal the world's best of the best in advertising.

This year, BBDO beat TBWA at the final hurdle to take arguably the most important of all accolades: the world's most-awarded agency network.

In what was almost a photo finish, the two networks had been neck and neck until the autumn; only a couple of points separated the two ahead of the Golden Drum and Campaign Poster Awards. In the end, though, it was BBDO's strength in depth that nudged the network ahead.

TBWA had three agencies placed higher than the leading BBDO agency (Abbott Mead Vickers BBDO) - an unprecedented number of agencies in the top ten.

But ten agencies (most notably Paris, London and San Francisco\ Los Angeles) contributed to TBWA's success, compared with 24 award-winning agencies from the BBDO network. The triumph caps BBDO's five-year run in either first or second place among the creative networks. The record, The Gunn Report says, demonstrates "in the most convincing way of all, that 'The work. The work. The work' is not just a slogan but more a way of life".

Of the other agency networks, Saatchi & Saatchi stole into third place with a track record headed by Del Campo Nazca Saatchi & Saatchi in Buenos Aires and its award-winning work for the Buenos Aires Zoo, which triumphed at the local FIAP Awards, at Cannes and the Clios.

By any measure, it was a phenomenal year for Crispin Porter & Bogusky in Miami. Not only did the agency's Ikea "lamp" TV ad win the Grand Prix at Cannes (and triumph in many other major TV awards), but the agency's print work for Mini also garnered plaudits across the globe. Outstanding creative work for other clients including American Legacy Foundation (with a truth about smoking message), Bell Helmets, Giro and the Florida Department of Health helped the agency score 50 points on the The Gunn Report register.

CP&B knocked TBWA\Paris into second place. Interestingly, all TBWA\ Paris' Gunn points came from print work, with award-winning ads for Sony PlayStation and Nissan crowding the agency's awards shelf.

Last year's winning agency, Wieden & Kennedy (Portland and New York), scored more points this year, thanks to work for Nike, ESPN, and Miller, but still fell into third place.

Over the past four years of The Gunn Report, the most awarded advertisers have been Volkswagen, Sony and Nike. In 2003, the same three advertisers were again jostling for the top three posts and it was the tightest-ever finish. This time, it was VW that got the highest score, with Volkswagen of America's advertising by DDB, and BMP DDB's "elepump" work in London, lifting VW to the top. Nike, last year's winner, triumphed with US TV work by W&K. Sony, with work in France, Japan, the US, Australia and Germany, secured the third slot.

Ads from the US and UK dominated the league of most-awarded TV and cinema ads, with the US accounting for 20 of the top 50 commercials and the UK nine. The carve-up between the countries was more marked this year than for the past four years. Almost the reverse happened in print where, for the first time in recent history, the US and UK were notably absent from the upper reaches of the table.

Ikea "lamp", winner of the Grand Prix at Cannes and the Grand Clio, only managed eighth place in the global best-of-the-best rankings. The TBWA\London John Smith's "no nonsense" campaign, a real crowd-pleaser at the shows, made sixth place. Saatchi & Saatchi's "cartoon" ad for the NSPCC (which managed the grand slam of gold at Cannes, the One Show and a D&AD silver) shared second place with the VegaOlmosPonce Buenos Aires work for Axe deodorant spray, "metamorphosis". The top slot, though, went to Euro RSCG Mezzano Constantini Mignani in Milan, for its ad for the Peugeot 206, " the sculptor", with awards that included gold and the Journalists' Prize at Cannes, the Grand Prix at Epica and a Clio gold.

The most-awarded print ad was Bartle Bogle Hegarty Singapore's Levi's Classic Men's 501s "hugging" campaign, which won the Best of the Best, two golds and three silvers at the Asian Advertising Awards and also took prizes at D&AD, New York Ad Directors and AdFest.

Of the world's most awarded directors, this year's table bears little relation to 2002's - 15 out of the top 26 names in the 2003 league didn't make it last year.

Daniel Kleinman, for work including John Smith's and Microsoft Xbox, shared the top place with Thailand's Thanonchai Sornsrivichai, whose client list includes Orange, Chiclets Sticks, Krung Thai Bank and Bridgestone Tyres. Last year's winner, Frank Budgen, only managed fourth place in 2003, but scored with "cartoon" and ads for Levi's, Reebok and Nike. The world's most-awarded production company was Morton Jankel Zander in Los Angeles, with winning work including the Fox Sports Net/NHL campaign, "lamp" and ads for Budweiser, Land Rover and HP.

But if there is one particularly sobering thought to be pulled out of the overall tally, it is the slide in the UK's performance. Once again, the US was the most awarded country, with the UK the runner-up. But it wasn't a close fight - the gap between the two markets was at its widest ever (134 points) and 2003 was the UK's least successful year in the past five years. France and Argentina are snapping at its heels in third and fourth place. The competition for the world's most creative market is hotting up.

See for details of how to obtain the full report


Rank Agency Winner Winner Total

points points points

(TV) (print)

1 Crispin Porter & Bogusky (Miami) 26 24 50

2 TBWA\Paris - 45 45

3 Wieden & Kennedy (Oregon & New York) 37 4 41

4 Arnold Worldwide (Boston) 19 10 29

5= Bartle Bogle Hegarty (London) 23 4 27

5= TBWA\London 22 5 27

7= Del Campo Nazca Saatchi & Saatchi

Buenos Aires 11 14 25

7= Dentsu (Tokyo, Osaka & Matsuyama) 20 5 25

9 TBWA\Chiat\Day San Francisco\Los Angeles 22 1 23

10 Abbott Mead Vickers BBDO (London) 15 6 21

Source: The Gunn Report 2003.


Rank Rank Agency Winner Winner Total

2003 2002 points points points

(TV) (print)

1 1 BBDO Worldwide 79 56 135

2 4 TBWA 66 63 129

3 2 Saatchi & Saatchi 45 65 110

4 3 DDB Worldwide 69 38 107

5 5 Leo Burnett 53 37 90

6 6 Lowe 52 25 77

7= 11 J. Walter Thompson 38 13 51

7= 8 Ogilvy & Mather 16 35 51

9 9 McCann-Erickson 24 18 42

10 12 Euro RSCG 28 5 33

Source: The Gunn Report 2003.


Rank Client/Ad Agency Country Total


1 Peugeot 206 Euro RSCG Mezzano

"the sculptor" Constantini Mignani

Milan Italy 22

2= Axe deodorant spray VegaOlmosPonce

"metamorphosis" Buenos Aires Argentina 19

2= NSPCC "cartoon" Saatchi & Saatchi

London UK 19

4 Fox Sports Net/NHL TBWA\Chiat\Day San

"iron", "dumpster" Francisco/Los Angeles US 18

5 MTV Latin America "baby", La Comunidad Miami

"smells like Britney" Beach US 17

6= John Smith's "mum",

"diving", "babies" TBWA\London UK 16

6= Volkswagen of America Arnold Worldwide

"squares" Boston US 16

8= Ikea "lamp" Crispin Porter &

Bogusky Miami US 14

8= Stella Artois

"Devil's Island" Lowe London UK 14

10 Nike "angry chicken" Wieden & Kennedy

Oregon US 13

Source: The Gunn Report 2003.


Rank Client/Ad Agency Country Total


1 Levi's 501s "hugging" Bartle Bogle

campaign Hegarty Singapore 16

2= Sony Alpine Racer

"broken thumb" TBWA\Paris France 13

2= Sony PlayStation

"veteran" campaign TBWA\Paris France 13

2= Buenos Aires Zoo "polar Del Campo Nazca

bear", "giraffe", "lion" Saatchi & Saatchi

Buenos Aires Argentina 13

5 Sony PlayStation

"rebirth" campaign TBWA\Paris France 11

6 Mattel Hot Wheels Ogilvy & Mather

"rain", "cop", "daredevil" Mexico Mexico 9

7= Mizuno Wave Sports Almap BBDO Sao

Shoes "skeleton" campaign Paolo Brazil 8

7= Amnesty International

"Barres" campaign TBWA\Paris France 8

7= Timberland "seek out"

campaign Fallon New York US 8

7= Natan Jewellry "ugly/ Del Campo Nazca

handsome" campaign Saatchi & Saatchi

Sao Paolo Brazil 8

Source: The Gunn Report 2003.

PEUGEOT 206: 'A truly multicultural production'

Roberto Greco, creative director, Euro RSCG Mezzano Constantini Mignani

When the Italian client looked Giovanni Porro and myself in the eye and said "Let's go", we realised that something special was going to happen. We had just presented a script for a car commercial in which a young Indian guy keeps on crashing a car, while the real product, the Peugeot 206, appears for just a second in a magazine picture.

It was our first proposal both to the Italian and international clients.

We got the approval, we got the money and we got the right director to make it. In the end, it was a truly multicultural production. The film seen on TV in more than 47 countries and at Cannes is actually the director's cut.

One-and-a-half years later, according to The Gunn Report, "the sculptor" is the most highly awarded commercial in 2003. And while it's a first for an Italian commercial and an Italian agency, it's not a miracle.

For me, the moral of this story, with its happy ending, is that what you need is a client who believes in advertising, as well as in you, of course.

LEVI'S 501: 'Great advertising that actually works'

Steve Elrick, creative director, Bartle Bogle Hegarty Asia-Pacific

I would love to be able to play the martyr and suggest that the campaign was a dramatic, gargantuan effort from start to finish.

Sorry. But it was pretty much a dream. It just all seemed to be right.

The brief? To launch a new Levi's 501 jean specially cut for women across all of Asia (pretty tough to get a more iconic product and more iconic brand).

Considering the UK mothership's years of brilliant work on Levi's, it could have been seen as a bit of a daunting task ... so I dodged it and gave it to a young team: Tinus Strydom and Alex Lim. Young, but they like to work the "old" way; by papering the wall with lots of ideas. One campaign sang out instantly.

The lads then experimented with poses. Alex wielded the camera while Tinus wrestled my PA, Aida, into various poses, all in the name of advertising.

Idea now knocked up and ably cosseted by account bloke Hoon Kim (now the managing director of our Japan office), it was presented and instantly loved by Hiromi Horie and Merci Corrales at Levi's Japan.

All that remained to be done was to make it beautiful. Enter the snapper Nadav Kander. Young bloke, you may not have heard of him. I'm sure he'll go far if he listens to the advice I gave him. But he managed to pull it out of the bag and create beautiful, ethereal images of three different couples as one.

Then, yes, it proceeded to win a stack of metal around the award shows.

Before it did that, it won the big stuff. The fact that Nigel Bogle had that, and only that, campaign up in his office before the proofs were dry and John Hegarty rated it as some of the best Levi's print work ever, meant it was a winner already.

Oh, then it started to sell a shit-load of jeans, but since some of the award-show junkies get a little embarrassed by great advertising that actually works, we'll have to save that story for the effectiveness awards.

Hugs all round.

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