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BMF is a leading agency in Australia, and the most celebrated subsidiary of what is now Enero Group (formerly Photon). It has a reputation for excellent, often funny creative work, especially for what has become its biggest and most notable client, the supermarket chain Aldi. It is widely credited for establishing Aldi as - in the words of reputation monitor Roy Morgan - Australia's Most Trusted Brand. The main office is in Sydney, offering a fully integrated service. A second outpost in Melbourne also operated for several years under the banner of sister agency Naked. In 2019, the Naked brand was officially absorbed into BMF and no longer operates separately. Founded in 1996 as a breakaway from The Campaign Palace, BMF enjoyed spectacular success in the 2000s, and was named as Australia's Ad Agency of the Decade at the end of 2009 by local trade magazine B&T. However, that kind of accolade always seems to become more of a burden than an asset and performance since has been much less muted, partly as a result of the serious challenges which faced parent group Photon/Enero in the early 2010s. Creatively though BMF still remains one of Australia's most impressive non-network agencies (though at least a little of its celebrity has transferred to rival The Monkeys). A decade after its earlier accolade by B&T it was named Agency of the Year again for 2019. Campaign Brief awarded it the same honour in 2020. All three of BMF's founders have now departed the agency. Paul Fishlock left in 2003 to return to The Campaign Palace until its eventual closure; Warren Brown - the B in BMF - stepped down from the agency in 2017; while Matthew Melhuish moved up to become group CEO of Enero. However he too departed the group in 2020. Steve McArdle is managing director. Alex Derwin is chief creative officer.

Capsule checked 21st May 2020

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Recent stories from Adbrands Update:

Adbrands Daily Update 19th May 2021: "The Call of the Off Season". Fabulous sights and sounds in two new spots from Australian agency BMF for Tourism Tasmania, promoting that often-overlooked paradise that lies to the south of the Australian mainland. Off season, of course, because they're now heading into the Southern hemisphere's winter. This is a wonderfully rich collection of vignettes; snippets that often travel the path less followed instead of the obvious tourist magnets. We especially liked the frustrated golfer. Me, I'm sold. I'll be on a plane as soon as these damn travel restrictions get lifted.

Adbrands Daily Update 9th Nov 2020: "Free Fall". You've never seen a sofa commercial quite like this before. Newly appointed BMF's debut campaign for Australian furniture retailer Amart offers spectacular photography and a razor sharp script, shot through with the agency's trademark offbeat sense of humour. That's quite some stunt. In all honesty, it's astonishing that the client signed off on it. Like most furniture stores the world over, Amart generally offers rather more mundane product-heavy showroom-based commercials. Will BMF's daring departure from the norm shift more sofas? Only time will tell, but this is certainly an ad you won't forget in a hurry.

Adbrands Daily Update 9th Nov 2020: "Synchronised Santas". We're going to be more discriminating about which Christmas spots we pick out as an Ad of the Week this holiday season. Good or bad, there's already plenty of the same-old-same-old in general circulation: sentiment and sweetness, tinsel and tackiness. However, BMF's splendid campaign for Aldi in Australia is - as usual - something else again. Australian Christmases are different enough already from the ones we're used to in the Northern hemisphere, but BMF have again slathered theirs with a thick layer of Antipodean craziness. Extensive deployment of low-key but effective CG makes these identical Santas hypnotically disturbing. Someone should carve out that bit of them all diving into a pool at 0:38 for a gif loop. It could drive you insane.

Adbrands Daily Update 4th Nov 2019: "The Miracle Ham". Aldi in Australia is an early contender for one the year's best Christmas ads with a brilliantly inventive and unusual spot from local creative hot shop BMF. Elsewhere around the globe, Aldi's ads tend to be rather more conventional but in Australia BMF has been going heavy on the quirky for several years, to great effect. Virtually every ad the two companies have produced over the past several years has been memorable in its own way. As a result, Aldi has gobbled away market share from traditional local champions Woolworths and Coles. This latest miniature masterpiece imagines a ham - Australia's traditional Christmas staple - that miraculously never ends. The island of Tasmania does stirling work as the film's lustrous backdrop. A really excellent little fable.

Adbrands Weekly Update 15th Nov 2018: Ads Of The Week: "Santa Crashes Christmas". Australia's BMF hotshop delivers another cracker for Aldi down under. The usual Christmas stuff - tinsel and trees and prezzies - is all well and fine in ads, but it's outliers like this that really make the holiday advertising splurge worthwhile. Kudos to all those clients and agencies that are prepared to try something out of the usual for the holiday season. Clearly Aussies are already used to a summertime Christmas, however odd it might seem to all of us up here in the northern hemisphere, but I think it's fair to say we've never before seen Santa Claus shearing a sheep or being chased out of an outdoor dunnie by a snake.


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