Ammirati Puris Lintas
Financial C+
Billings and revenues virtually flat, at $870 million and $114 million, respectively. New business wins include Epson printers, Aetna Retirement Services and additional assignments from clients Johnson & Johnson, Burger King and Chesebrough Ponds.
Creative B+
Quality of reel is higher than most, but better work has come out of this agency in the past, especially on MasterCard and Burger King. Compaq Computers “Has it changed your life yet?” campaign showed solid strategy and an effective execution.
Management A
1995 was the year the Ammirati team took full control at former Lintas headquarters, overhauling more than office decor. As expected, Mike Lotito and Helayne Spivak helmed media and creative; Ralph Ammirati stepped back. Globe-trotting Chairman Martin Puris completed reverse takeover with name and culture change from Lintas Worldwide to Ammirati Puris Lintas. In addition, Puris got coveted seat on IPG board.
Regional Highlights
Though Campbell-Ewald in Detroit and Long Haymes Carr in North Carolina remain in the IPG family, they dropped the Lintas moniker from their names–and shifted corporate reporting lines–last year to maintain regional identities and avoid client conflicts with New York.
Teacher”s Comments
Early “96 wins signal the merged agency is beyond transition phase and successfully pushing forward with business. Creative on former Lintas clients needs a lift; agency is proceeding with caution. New distance from Detroit office frees Puris to more aggressively pursue a GM car account.
Bates USA
Financial D
Billings dipped 3% to $1.2 billion, in a year when rivals posted significant increases. Revenues fell 2% to an estimated $121 million. Losses of Mars and Campbell Soup took familiar names off Bates roster. The agency did win the EDS account, the Lucky Strike consolidation from current client BAT and some new assignments from Miller.
Creative c
Though serviceable, the work lacks sparkle. The one exception is Texaco, where the agency makes a strong showing. Bobbi John deserves credit for defense of Miller account, but improved work and new agencies in the beer category mean Bates will have to rise to the occasion.
Management C
A difficult year in which account losses, management changes and the Miller review put fear into the hearts of employees and devastated morale. Bates made strides to right itself quickly, naming Bill Whitehead as U.S. chief executive and elevating Mike Robertson to executive creative director. After initial turbulence on Estee Lauder and Foot Locker, agency has stabilized those accounts.
Regional Highlights
Bates spent much of the year continuing its efforts to build the agency into one cohesive network. The shop rebranded Bates Southwest from Campbell Mithun Esty in Houston and Bates USA Midwest from McCaffrey & McCall in Indianapolis. The agency also restructured management at its Orange County Hyundai unit.
Teacher”s Comments
There”s a lot more clarity in the organizational chart and in the vision of the agency. Now it”s time to put the plan into action. Creative needs improvement, and management needs results in the form of additional business. Like Saatchi, must assure clients on media assignments moved to Zenith.
Financial B-
Billings were relatively flat at $2.1 billion, a 2% gain. Revenues rose 6% to $247 million. The numbers don”t tell the story of BBDO”s year, which opened with a $250 million global Mars win and closed with the consolidation of $300 million in Bayer billings at the agency. BBDO also picked up a prestigious Olympics assignment from AT&T.
Creative A-
With the new Mars work and the latest Doritos campaign, BBDO has shown a knack for finding new ideas in snack food, a category notoriously parched for good creative. Pepsi struck a nerve with boy in bottle; stuffed crust launch for Pizza Hut played to agency”s strength with celebs. Visa Gold keeps getting better. Can”t say the same for Apple TV, which slipped this year.
Management A-
Management is showing ingenuity as it gears up for eventual succession to Allen Rosenshine and Phil Dusenberry. Devoting more resources to worldwide network, as in the hire of Jean-Michel Goudard, while reinforcing the ranks in North America. Newcomer Donna Weinheim adds even more depth to creative team.
Regional Highlights
It was rough going at BBDO West this year. The problems at Apple continued to cause an exodus of talent, most notably the departure of Susan Westre. The cash cow in Detroit remains contented, but Chicago lost 10-year client Alberto-Culver toward the end of the year. The Chicago office also had some management turnover; Tonise Paul was promoted to the chief executive officer spot.
Teacher”s Comments
BBDO has shown that it can excel on the domestic side. With the Mars and Bayer wins last year, the agency is now about to be tested on the global front.
Financial A-
Billings rose 24% to $1.6 billion, thanks to the wins of Bell Atlantic/Nynex Mobile, Bahamas tourism and others. Revenues soared 26% to $200 million.
Creative C+
The Eagle Vision characters are endlessly interesting, and the commercials are woven well to impart information and entertain. Neon is an improvement from prior year. The work out of the New York office is less compelling. Family Channel and Merrill Lynch spots, for instance, seem little more than an exercise in gratuitous sentimentality.
Management B
Chuck Peebler and company executed some interesting acquisitions, including Norton Associates and Ketchum”s Chicago office. The moves–Ketchum buy added $100 million–help add heft to Bozell”s overall billings. Plans for public offering for Poppe Tyson unit could reap financial rewards.
Regional Highlights
The Orange County, Calif., office won control of the $155 million Taco Bell account after a year-long tug of war with The Richards Group, which had shared it. The office also strengthened its management ranks with the addition of Harvey Hoffenberg to lead creative on Taco Bell and Peter Stranger to handle account management.
Teacher”s Comments
Bozell does well at getting into most of the new business action in New York, and the agency continues to pull in some important wins in categories like technology and telecommunications. But creative performance and lack of substantial global network keeps it a step behind the upper tier. The For Sale sign is off for now.
Campbell-Ewald Advertising
Financial B
An impressive year as billings rose 27% to $844 million. Revenues up 29% to $82 million. Numbers reflect a very active, very good new business year, with addition of Office Max, Amoco and Whirlpool. Small Kelly Services business exited. Poor revenues/billings ratio compared to peers.
Creative B-
“Like a Rock” campaign for Chevy Trucks is the model for GM”s new brand-building program: Both TV and print work consistently reinforce the nameplate”s image. Chevy car work is always well produced, if not risky. Office Max work is price/item retail advertising, but with enough spark to make it interesting.
Management B+
Chairman Dick O’Connor gets the aura of independence he has sought with removal of Lintas name from agency”s moniker to avoid conflict problems with New York. Still part of Interpublic, but more and more its own agency. New business record was excellent, but loss of Amoco last month after only a year raised questions about who blinked.
Teacher”s Comments
There”s a lot of life left in this 85-year-old agency. Freed from conflict concerns, it”s going outside automotive for new business like never before–and winning.
Campbell Mithun Esty
Financial B+
Billings jumped 27% to $633 million. Estimated revenues up 25% to $65 million. Growth includes a hefty $93 million from new clients, including Kmart, Interstate Bakeries, US West broadcast buying and Recovery Engineering. Current clients hiked spending by $50 million. Loss of Mercury Marine and 3M corporate work subtracted only $8 million.
Creative B-
Obviously creatives have been told to have more fun on the job, and it shows. TV work exhibits new life and wit: Penny Marshall and Rosie O’Donnell joking around for Kmart, a shark attacking an inner tube because it thinks it”s a Hostess Twinkie, a goldfish that jumps from its tank into a glass of water treated with a Pur filter. Print, for Healthy Choice and others, is as good as it”s been.
Management B+
Wiggling out of the Cordiant grasp and into a half-ownership deal with Interpublic seems to have breathed new life into CME. Chief executive officer Howard Liszt cranked up new business and won a major retailer (Kmart), a huge media consolidation by US West, and continued growth from existing clients.
Teacher”s Comments
Agency is still the account-service giant, and clients know it. With creative improvements, the agency seems to be adding another, though less powerful, gun to its arsenal. Kmart”s management instability remains a question mark, and what happened to DowBrands, consolidated at CME at the end of “94? Not much work for that client is visible yet.
D’Arcy Masius Benton & Bowles
Financial D
Billings, at $1.9 billion, dropped 6%. Revenue fell 6% to $177 million. While Coca-Cola Co. continues to show faith in the agency, the network has lost substantial assignments from clients including Amoco, FTD, Whirlpool and Kraft.
Creative B-
Substantial improvement in creative throughout the network. From Highway One in Los Angeles to DMB&B”s New York headquarters, bar has been raised for clients including Baskin-Robbins and Procter & Gamble.
Management C-
Dick Hopple and Roy Bostock were unable to come up with formula to stem the tide of client defections. Focus that has proved successful abroad–development of top-to-bottom client relationships and cohesion among network shops–is now being attempted in U.S., which should help right the ship. Televest continues to be media billings magnet, even for clients that sour on creative or account service.
Regional Highlights
DMB&B”s Chicago office closed its doors in December after keystone clients Amoco and Dairy Management departed. St. Louis lost Blockbuster Music but added M&M/Mars business. Detroit, while hurt by flight of FTD, improved its Pontiac creative and is gearing up for Cadillac”s launch of the Catera. New York is slowly recouping a host of client losses.
Teacher”s Comments
Agency would probably like to forget 1995. And 1996 starts uncertainly, with architect of new North American system gone. A lot of pressure now on Dawn Hudson, recruited to head up New York; Arthur Selkowitz returns to reinforce P&G tie.
DDB Needham
Financial B
Billings rose 19% to $2.3 billion; reported gain of $365 million best of any U.S. agency. Revenues climbed to $262 million, an 11% increase over “94. New business wins include Tyson Foods, Bank of New York and local Bud Light assignments in New York and Texas.
Creative A-
Showed continued excellence in producing humorous campaigns. In Chicago, Bob Scarpelli”s team restored luster to Anheuser-Busch advertising with Bud Light “I Love You, Man” character and Budweiser”s “Ants” and “Frogs.” Agency kept New York Lotto”s “Hey, You Never Know” campaign from getting too familiar and carved out effective position in Digital work.
Management B
Shared management structure first introduced in the New York office was extended to Dallas and Los Angeles. Plans were made to establish a unified agency brand with a name and logo modification that would play down the Needham moniker throughout the network. In New York, the agency maintained its hold on Mobil, despite a review for the corporate portion of the account. Though it attempted a similar save when faced with an Amtrak review in November, DDB recently lost two large portions of the rail account.
Regional Highlights
Chicago launched much-praised Anheuser-Busch and Rold Gold creative. Dallas broke a new business dry spell with the win of EPA”s Energy Star Programs account and laid the groundwork to split its PepsiCo promotions business into a separate Omnicom company.
Teacher”s Comments
After turmoil and turnover of early “90s, Keith Reinhard and John Bradstock have settled on the structure of their domestic network and who will run it.
Foote, Cone & Belding
Financial B-
Billings rose 9% to $3 billion; revenues up 6% to $324 million. Los Angeles added Sizzler and El Pollo Loco; San Francisco lured interactive assignments from AT&T and Disney. Chicago won Blue Cross and Blue Shield and Blockbuster Music. In New York, loss of Colgate-Palmolive business stung, but agency scored wins of Campbell”s Chunky soup, Grape Nuts and Tropicana/Dole juices.
Creative B
Levi”s work still has that edge; computer animation of the Raid bugs and of a praying mantis for Fila add some technological zip. “Tap the Rockies” for Coors Light is a retreat to tired ideas. Orange County office”s “Passion for the Road” work saved Mazda account but isn”t a breakthrough.
Management B-
A lot of True North chairman Bruce Mason”s time, effort and angst went into protracted negotiations with Publicis over fate of global alliance. Consolidation of S.C. Johnson”s global business at FCB helped after Colgate-Palmolive and Bayer moves left agency out. Holding company concept took firmer shape this year, as TN Technologies was launched and TN Media unit started with a bang, via Campbell”s $150 million media win.
Regional Highlights
Chicago office finally is producing top-notch creative; brands from Bayer Bess Vanderwarker acquisition will give it more to work with. Creative at New York office continues to flourish under Ted Littleford for clients like Nabisco. San Francisco becoming important digital media force. Los Angeles wants to win a studio account, trying for Universal.
Teacher”s Comments
Brendan Ryan doubled billings at FCB/Leber Katz, to $1 billion. Rewarded with FCB chairman”s post; needs a creative counterpart. Challenge now is to create a true global network, not just a series of outstanding offices.
Grey Advertising
Financial A-
Billings increased 8% to $2.2 billion on a string of account wins and new assignments. Revenues rose by 8% to $327 million. Biggest boost came from Mars agency reshuffling, about $125 million. Other wins included FTD, Nokia, American Home Products, Glaxo Wellcome. Lost Grape Nuts, Carl”s Jr. and Color Tile. Claimed $50 million Hasbro U.S. media win. Revenue/billing ratio of 15% at top in industry–thanks, P&G!
Creative C+
A noticeable improvement this year, including some out-of-the-box thinking in the form of a bear that snuggles up to Ethan Allan”s furniture and a hockey puck that races for a goalie”s head to illustrate the ultimate Anacin headache. The agency reel still bears a packaged-goods stamp, but some work, like Hugo Boss, makes strides to break into the Gen X ad arena.
Management A-
Grey doesn”t throw money around, but its strategic investments usually pay off. Set up MediaCom as global media company, with billings of $3 billion. The agency has put additional staff behind its interactive group and vested more authority in several of its creative directors, who were named executive vice presidents. The final say is still with the account side, but that”s the way Grey”s clients like it.
Regional Highlights
The engine that drives this agency is unmistakably in New York. Still, the Western division made a sizable contribution when Grey Direct pulled in the Microsoft direct business and G2 signed another three-year contract with Mitsubishi. Los Angeles got a new manager, Jeff Alperin.
Teacher”s Comments
Grey knows how to get new clients and keep the old ones. Its growth is particularly impressive given that it does not have a second agency network. Will Ed Meyer look to BDDP to play that role?
Hal Riney & Partners
Financial B
Billings up 16% to $550 million; estimated revenues up 17% to $56 million. Much of the growth came from existing clients, primarily Saturn in San Francisco and John Deere and Subway in Chicago. New business assignments included Kinko”s, Eddie Bauer, Gallo Draft Cider and the General Motors electric car.
Creative B+
With the addition of creative director Dave O’Hare, the agency”s work was on an upswing. Saturn ads kept fresh with “Homecoming” series. TV and print for smaller accounts is where creative shines. From PBS” opera music out on the farm to Starbucks” homage to the French Foreign Legion, the ads demonstrated more attitude than the shop has shown in recent years.
Management C+
Top management was shaken up with Hal Riney stepping back into day-to-day operations. Scott Marshall”s appointment to the long-vacant president”s slot prompted exits of John Yost and Joe O’Neill. Agency morale took a beating, but Marshall managed to keep clients happy and instill a measure of confidence in the staff that stuck around. More stability: Neither office lost any accounts, and agency kept hand in creative choice for Saturn”s Japan launch.
Regional Highlights
Riney”s Chicago office had an outstanding year, with billings up 30% to $185 million. The management team of Barry Krause and Jonathan Harries grew current clients and nabbed Kinko”s and a juicy assignment from Bell South.
Teacher”s Comments
To attract the talent it needs to maintain growth, agency must have clear course plotted. The Marshall-Riney team shows promise in winning new business. Will Hal stay in the game this time around? Or is he just waiting to cash in his chips?
J. Walter Thompson
Financial B+
Billings rose 10% to $2.7 billion; revenues up an estimated 10% to $376 million. Bell Atlantic and Reynolds losses were offset by the addition of Weight Watchers in New York and Midas in Chicago. New billings also came from existing clients, including DeBeers in the U.S. and several Kraft assignments.
Creative B
The agency tried to bring some different thinking to the creative table in 1995. Kodak Film appeals to the practical side after years of cloying “Kodak moments.” Clairol Ultress got a glossy, high-tech treatment. And the agency put a new twist on selling sex with Schick. It”s a noble effort to wake up a department that”s been doing the same kind of work for the same clients for years.
Management B+
Burt Manning found his successor–again. This time it”s Chris Jones, who is likely to get the job. A new management team was installed in New York: exec vp Susan Gianinno, cd J.J. Jordan, strategic planner Jeff DeJoseph, media director Emily Swartzentruber and new business head Bob Schrijver. The makeover stirred some initial unrest, but the leaders seem to be carving out their own identity for the office. Jean Pool ascended to top of North American media.
Regional Highlights
An emphasis on cleaning house prevailed. San Francisco and Chicago both resigned smaller, less profitable pieces of business. Chicago made a strong showing with wins of Princess Cruises, Midas, Bandai Toys. J. Steve Davis has absorbed loss of creative counterpart Nina DiSesa in Chicago.
Teacher”s Comments
For a traditionally staid shop, J. Walter made several potentially unsettling moves last year. Result: Business kept chugging along. New, largely untested management not flying solo yet–what happens when it does?
Copyright ASM Communications, Inc. (1996) ALL RIGHTS RESERVED
End of Report
Adweek Agency Benchmarks (National and Regional) (Special Report: Agency Report Cards 1995 – 683 words – April 15, 1996)
Agency Staff Billings/Staff Revenue/Staff Revenue/Billngs
J. Walter Thompson 2,271 $ 166 $ 1,196 13.8%
Grey Advertising 2,239 146 973 15.0%
Foote, Cone & Belding 2,085 155 1,427 10.9%
Leo Burnett Co. 2,067 179 1,202 14.9%
DDB Needham 2,065 127 1,134 11.2%
McCann-Erickson 1,900 150 1,000 15.0%
Young & Rubicam 1,882 132 1,296 10.2%
Bozell 1,700 118 932 12.6%
BBDO 1,537 161 1,382 11.5%
DMB&B 1,470 121 1,265 9.5%
Ogilvy & Mather 1,400 150 1,494 10.0%
Saatchi & Saatchi 1,217 181 1,811 10.0%
Bates USA 1,001 121 1,216 9.9%
TBWA Chiat/Day 746 $ 175 $ 1,403 12.5%
Ammirati Puris Lintas 700 163 1,243 13.1%
N.W. Ayer & Partners 585 161 1,456 11.0%
Temerlin McClain 571 104 919 11.3%
Campbell Mithun Esty 540 122 1,173 10.4%
Campbell-Ewald 496 165 1,701 9.7%
Wells Rich Greene BDDP 465 192 1,829 10.5%
Ketchum 430 174 1,385 12.6%
Lowe & Partners/SMS 375 193 1,400 13.8%
MVBMS/Euro RSCG 360 200 2,247 8.9%
Hal Riney & Partners 334 168 1,647 10.2%
National averages 1,177 $ 151 $ 1,283 11.8%
Agency Staff Billings/Staff Revenue/Staff Revenue/Billings
Ross Roy 735 $ 88 $ 609 14.5%
Arnold Communications 575 100 740 13.6%
EvansGroup 427 98 684 14.4%
Hill, Holliday, Connors 389 135 902 15.0%
The Martin Agency 361 102 688 14.8%
Rubin Postaer & Associates 320 127 1,142 11.1%
W.B. Doner, Detroit 319 93 911 10.3%
The Richards Group 319 118 931 12.7%
Jordan McGrath Case & Taylor 317 151 1,404 10.8%
Wieden & Kennedy 316 131 1,313 10.0%
Fallon McElligott 306 117 880 13.3%
Cramer-Krasselt 293 111 716 15.5%
Tatham Euro RSCG 292 121 1,250 9.7%
GSD&M 280 112 1,413 7.9%
Martin-Williams 250 104 740 14.1%
HMS Partners 236 93 619 15.1%
Deutsch 214 165 1,542 10.7%
Bernstein-Rein 210 116 960 12.1%
Tucker Wayne/Luckie & Co. 206 141 1,023 13.8%
Griffin Bacal 200 113 1,023 11.0%
Lord Dentsu & Partners 198 118 995 11.9%
Highway One 195 101 1,021 9.9%
Gotham 194 161 1,330 12.1%
Anderson & Lembke 193 105 959 10.9%
Team One Advertising 193 119 1,192 10.0%
Wyse Advertising 185 90 762 11.9%
W. B. Doner, Baltimore 184 98 652 15.0%
Dailey & Associates 184 147 1,103 13.3%
Goodby, Silverstein & Partners 182 196 1,864 10.5%
Carmichael Lynch 180 114 806 14.1%
Ackerman McQueen 175 85 602 14.1%
Houston Herstek Favat 173 156 1,038 15.0%
Publicis/Bloom, Dallas 173 104 1,040 10.0%
Lois/USA 170 94 941 10.0%
Mullen 160 128 851 15.0%
Goldberg Moser O’Neill 160 164 1,094 15.0%
Kirshenbaum Bond & Partners 155 $ 115 $ 1,258 9.1%
Partners & Shevack 154 173 1,757 9.9%
Ingalls, Quinn & Johnson 152 89 714 12.5%
Bayer Bess Vanderwarker 150 112 1,133 9.9%
Fogarty Klein & Partners 139 138 999 13.8%
Margeotes/Fertitta + Partners 138 183 1,402 13.0%
Warwick Baker & Fiore 136 191 1,287 14.9%
Larkin Meeder & Schweidel 136 91 604 15.0%
Avrett, Free & Ginsberg 135 338 2,741 12.3%
Long Haymes Carr 130 134 894 15.0%
Rockett, Burkhead, Lewis 126 101 685 14.8%
Davis, Ball & Colombatto 126 144 1,298 11.1%
Cliff Freeman & Partners 125 120 1,200 10.0%
McKinney & Silver 125 110 1,055 10.4%
Yesawich, Pepperdine & Brown 125 114 761 15.0%
North Castle Parterns 123 144 1,232 11.7%
Meldrum & Fewsmith 121 161 1,044 15.4%
Sosa, Bromley 118 119 962 12.3%
Cranford Johnson Robinson 115 71 473 15.0%
Harris Drury Cohen 100 131 876 15.0%
Publicis/Bloom, New York 89 135 1,348 10.0%
Rives Carlberg 89 73 711 10.3%
Black Rogers Sullivan Goodnight 85 82 824 10.0%
The William Cook Agency 81 153 1,121 13.7%
Keiler & Company 76 87 671 12.9%
Gray Kirk/Van Sant 75 158 1,207 13.1%
Mintz & Hoke 72 125 833 15.0%
Berry-Brown 65 88 635 13.9%
Mason & Madison 60 83 583 14.3%
Suissa Miller 52 269 2,480 10.9%
Puskar Gibbon Chapin 50 120 1,200 10.0%
McDougall Associates 43 184 1,074 17.1%
Marquardt & Roche 40 136 913 14.9%
Clarke Goward 23 211 1,409 15.0%
Regional averages 188 $ 122 $ 993 12.3%
Copyright ASM Communications, Inc. (1996) ALL RIGHTS RESERVED