The second agency founded by what are still the world's most famous admen, M&C Saatchi has built up a strong position for itself since formation in 1995, after Maurice and Charles Saatchi were ousted from their first agency Saatchi & Saatchi in a bitter boardroom row. Since then, M&C has risen to become one of the UK's foremost agencies, overtaking the original Saatchi business in domestic billings, and gradually establishing a global network which now stretches across 25 countries. Much of this expansion has been achieved organically organically or through local partnerships. The group has a particularly strong presence in the Asia Pacific region, considerably less so in the Americas. However, the performance of individual agencies has often been stormy. The Australian office has been rocked since 2012 by a succession of big losses and big gains. More serious still was the loss of M&C's two biggest UK accounts in quick succession in early 2014, followed by an ill-conceived overhaul of local management.
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Adbrands Weekly Update 30th Aug 2018: Ads of the Week "Above & Beyond". M&C Saatchi's Stockholm outpost is behind this stunning film for local telecoms company Com Hem. Sit back and strap in for a superbly cinematic thrill-ride as our youthful protagonist lets slip the boundaries of Earth to voyage into the atmosphere. It's a spectacular journey, with popcorn unexpectedly provided... Another excellent example of comic bathos strategically deployed for maximum effect.
Adbrands Weekly Update 28th Jun 2018: M&C Saatchi expanded its service portfolio this week with the acquisition of two linked UK-based social media agencies, Red Hare Digital and Grey Whippet, which specialise in the beauty and fashion arena. Red Hare manages a roster of around 40 social media influencers, mostly promoting beauty products; while Grey Whippet mostly works on the other side of the table managing social campaigns for marketer clients. The two units will be merged with M&C's existing social media team, under the management of Red Hare and Grey Whippet founders Jonathan Poole and Kate Lovett. The business will report as part of the parent group's M&C Saatchi Merlin talent management division.
Adbrands Weekly Update 29th Mar 2018: M&C Saatchi reported record results for 2017, though as usual a host of different accounting adjustments complicated a clear view of the bottom line. Revenues were almost £252m, up 12% year-on-year, or 7% at constant exchange rates. M&C doesn't really offer organic or LFL revenue growth metrics like the other groups, but the 7% constant currency lift would put it at the top of table alongside MDC, well ahead of larger rivals like Omnicom or WPP. The group's three regional divisions in Europe, Middle East & Africa and Asia & Australia jumped by between 23% and 26% each, an extraordinary achievement. Meanwhile, the UK managed a solid turnaround, up 6% as a result of strong contributions from PR, sponsorship and mobile. The Americas were the weak spot, down 3%. Statutory net profit jumped 37% to £4.6m, helped by adjustments. Headline profit before tax was up a slightly less dramatic but still strong 16%.
Adbrands Weekly Update 28th Sep 2017: M&C Saatchi showed a marked improvement in performance for the half-year to June after a significant wobble in its UK subsidiary in 2016. Revenues for the six months to-date jumped more than 21% to £121m (or 10% at constant currencies), while headline profit before tax was up 17% to £13m. However, the group's statutory accounts are complicated by a number of accounting adjustments mainly relating to management incentive schemes so the final reported profit was actually down slightly year-on-year. Also, despite much better results from the UK office, M&C's Asia & Australia division regained its position as the group's most profitable business.
Adbrands Weekly Update 16th Mar 2017: M&C Saatchi's continuing global expansion delivered a big boost to topline in 2016, with revenues up by 26% to £225m. Even at constant exchange rates the lift was a whopping 19%, while like-for-like growth excluding acquisitions was a very healthy 9% (better than any of M&C's larger marketing services rivals). The biggest contributors to growth were newly consolidated SS+K in the US, and strong performances in South Africa and Australia. That was the good news. Bottom-line wasn't anything like as strong, at least on a reported basis, with net profit plunging by almost two-thirds to £3.3m. That was the result of multiple impairment charges, revaluations and provisions for future earn-outs. On a headline basis, with those exceptional and non-cash items excluded, the group claimed a 15% increase in effective net profit to £15.4m. The main UK agency remains weak following an ill-conceived "takeover" in 2015 by the management team from digital acquisition LMFM. A fullscale restructuring last year, which included the departure of the LMFM managers, and the sale of equity participation to the new team, appears to have restored stability, but that came too late rebuild profitability. The UK was the group's only regional division to report a decline in annual operating profit in 2016.
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