Ogilvy re­gains top spot

Af­ter seven years as the big­gest, FCB is over­taken

Finweek English Edition - - Advertising & marketing - BY TONY KOEN­DER­MAN tonyk@fin­week.co.za

OGILVY has re­claimed its po­si­tion as South Africa’s big­gest ad agency group, el­bow­ing aside FCB, which has reigned supreme since 2000. The rank­ing is based on staff com­ple­ments at year-end 2006.

Fig­ures to be pub­lished in Tony Koen­der­man’s AdRe­view next week show Ogilvy now em­ploys 651 peo­ple, com­pared with 644 at FCB. When based on rev­enue earned by the groups, in­di­ca­tions are that Ogilvy may have gained the num­ber one spot in 2005. How­ever, as global agen­cies no longer dis­close their fi­nan­cial re­sults, it isn’t pos­si­ble to be sure. But one thing they do dis­close is their staffing level and by that mea­sure, Ogilvy is now back to No 1.

US stock ex­change-listed com­pa­nies stopped dis­clos­ing break­downs of agency fi­nan­cial re­sults to com­ply with US leg­is­la­tion.

Ogilvy’s staffing level rose from 621 to 651 be­tween 2005 and 2006, while FCB’s fell from 675 to 644. That was a re­sponse to R487m worth of new-busi­ness billings at Ogilvy last year, from new ac­counts that in­cluded SA Tourism, Cas­trol Global, Coca-Cola Africa, SA Air­ways re­tail, Port Ghalib Egypt, Exxaro, Sishen, Lind­say Saker, Cad­bury’s, Amer­i­can Ex­press and Me­dia24.

FCB gained R195m in new billings, with blue chip ac­counts such as Game, Mo­torola and the 2011 Rugby World Cup bid. But to­wards year-end it lost Uthingo (the pre­vi­ous lot­tery con­trac­tor).

AdRe­view es­ti­mates that Ogilvy’s fee and com­mis­sion in­come was R330m last year, and FCB’s R320m.

TBWA has held on to third po­si­tion in the ta­ble, though its staffing fell from 540 to 500. Young & Ru­bi­cam is in fourth spot; but it’s with fifth-placed Jupiter Draw­ing Room that the real chal­lenge lies. Hav­ing gained R1,2bn worth of new busi­ness last year, Jupiter raised its em­ploy­ment by 25% to 280 and is well placed for a chal­lenge for a top-three spot within a year or two.

Jupiter’s fee and com­mis­sion in­come rose 25% last year, but the big new ac­counts won’t con­trib­ute to its rev­enue un­til this year. There­fore, bar­ring ac­ci­dents, Jupiter stands to see an enor­mous jump dur­ing 2007.

The Ogilvy group also rose to the top of the creative league ta­ble, dis­plac­ing TBWA with strong show­ings from its Jo­han­nes­burg and Cape Town of­fices.

Full de­tails will be pub­lished in AdRe­view, with the is­sue of Fin­week dated April 26.


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