Marketing league table: Design - Design leagues

In an ever-more crowded market, design agencies are being forced to step up their commercial focus.

The mood of many in Britain's design industry has been encapsulated in a website launched recently by the Design Skills Advisory Panel. Introduced to canvas industry opinion, it hardly constitutes a glowing tribute to the sector's success. It is called, simply, 'Keep British Design Alive'.

The website is a reaction to the growing threat of low-cost design companies in emerging overseas markets. It pulls no punches when assessing the state of the UK industry. The site calls for 'added professionalism, added attention to training and added appreciation of our clients' needs'. It continues: 'A cottage industry, we often behave like enthusiastic amateurs rather than worldly pros. We lack basic professional standards and management skills.'

It is damning stuff. But what is curious about the site is that such self-flagellation comes at a time when the design industry, as a whole, is not in dire straits. This year's design agency league table shows no shortage of companies posting healthy rises in fee income, and there are reports of new business entering the market. In the first half of the year, the AAR handled about 50% more brand design projects than it did 12 months earlier.

It is not a boom, but following a few tough years in the wake of the dotcom bust, the industry has, at least, largely stabilised. 'The design market has not been buoyant for three or four years,' says Erick Davidson, chairman of Tayburn, which won the branding brief for Glasgow's bid to host the Commonwealth Games. 'But in the past 12 months it has picked up a bit.'

Several trends are working in the industry's favour. The shift in consumer preferences toward healthier, fresher products is resulting in new brands and design opportunities. Retailers are reassessing store design as they fight over declining consumer spend, while companies' growing preoccupation with internal communications has aided the corporate branding sector.

What's more, there is a feeling that design is moving up the food chain as a marketing discipline. Its role in business received state backing with the publication of the Cox Review, a government-commissioned report into how the nation's creative skills can be better exploited. This concluded that business had to harness this creativity more fully if it is to take on competitors in new markets. The need for a healthy UK design sector has never been stronger.

So why the despondency? The answer is that it remains fundamentally tough to run a successful design business. At the heart of the problem is massive oversupply. Design remains an exceedingly broad church. At the top of the industry are a few major players: there then follows an extremely long tail of small businesses, many with fewer than 20 staff.

In some ways this has always been a feature of the industry - design agencies tend to be happy to stay as boutiques rather than growing into medium-sized businesses. But this is apt to force people to set up on their own, creating yet more small businesses; a trend that was exacerbated during the last downturn, when many of the big agencies shed staff who went on to found their own companies.

The result is that clients have a multitude of shops from which to choose, and the margins made on design work have inevitably been squeezed. Design has become one of the least profitable marketing services sectors, with a return of just £4763 per head, according to Willott Kingston Smith, less than half the equivalent in PR and advertising.

The squeeze is being felt particularly in graphic design. This still tends to be bought at the client end by those at a relatively junior level, and often purely on price. Brand consultancy, on the other hand, tends to be bought by those in senior roles with a greater understanding of the industry, and an appreciation of the value it adds. At this end of the industry, there is a feeling that design is receiving greater attention.

According to Mike Branson, managing partner of Pearlfisher, whose clients include Green & Black's, the Cadbury-owned Fairtrade chocolate brand, the industry is being pulled in two directions. 'There are more clients who recognise what design can do for them,' he says. 'But at the same time there are more companies looking to buy more cost-effectively.'

Not surprisingly, many traditional design companies have sought to reinvent themselves as brand consultancies to protect their margins. How successful they have been in this is far from clear, however. Indeed, the rise in the use of agency search and selection services, such as that offered by the AAR, may reflect growing client uncertainty over exactly who does what.

A common gripe for design agencies is the lengthening pitch lists they face - a problem frequently put down to the increasing involvement of procurement departments, coupled with the inexperience of many of the client marketers overseeing the briefs. The result is that chasing new accounts is an expensive business. Tayburn estimates that it spent 10% of its fee income on pitches last year. 'If you're spending £10,000 to win a £30,000 brief, that's where your margins are going,' says Davidson.

As profits are squeezed, it also becomes harder for agencies to fulfil their employees' expectations. 'There has been an assumption that salaries will go up year on year, but fee levels remained static,' says Pearlfisher's Branson. 'Where does that leave the design industry? It is fighting a rising cost structure.'

There is no sign of this margin pressure letting up any time soon, as clients are under cost pressures themselves. Trevor Bradford, director of Creative Leap, argues that this has led to a 'safety first' mentality. 'There is less opportunity for clients to push the boundaries of what they're doing,' he says. 'It is better for them to achieve a result within their comfort zone.'

In short, the design industry is under pressure to convince clients that it is worth extra investment. Although some clients are paying greater attention to the role design plays within their marketing, many remain unwilling to back this up financially. The complaint that marketers are demanding more for less is a common one.

How, then, are agencies to respond? The UK market is largely mature, with few untapped client sectors. So it is no surprise that many UK agencies are expanding their overseas operations. Fitch, for example, sourced 40% of its work abroad, up from about 30% the year before. Its projects included the branding for this year's Asian Games in Doha.

There are many similar examples of international development from other agencies. Emerging markets such as Asia, the Middle East and Russia have proved fertile. Landor worked on the visual identity for Siberia's S7 airline. Imagination, meanwhile, has worked with Ford in China. Clearly the big agency networks with people on the ground across the world have an advantage in sourcing and delivering this work. But smaller agencies have been able to take advantage too.

Turquoise, one of the fastest-growing agencies in the league, has won a series of clients in the Middle East, including United Arab Emirates telecoms brand Du and Jordanian TV channel ATV. It has opened a Dubai office to service this work - one of several small UK shops to have set up far-flung overseas outposts. In many cases, clients from emerging markets actively seek out a UK agency - a testament to the creative talent of the domestic industry. 'In the Middle East clients place a real kudos on using British agencies,' says Turquoise managing director Linda Garcia. 'They know they can expect creative and strategic work of the highest level.' And it is not just companies from developing markets that recognise the strength of UK design. McDonald's is the chief client of Boxer, which handles the fast-food chain's business globally. The agency has used this relationship as a springboard to talk to other US clients.

While international work provides a welcome diversion from the cramped market at home, it does not offer a solution to domestic problems. The 'Keep British Design Alive' site highlights a series of failings that will hinder the UK industry if it is to compete with designers in cheaper markets. Perhaps the biggest of these is that designers have not been good at demonstrating that what they do works on anything other than a creative level. As the site says: 'We need proof that British design delivers creativity and value at a price worth paying.'

One issue is return on investment. Design has a poor reputation for proving the value it adds to a business, opening the door to price-based commoditisation. Again this has affected traditional design agencies more than the brand consultancies, which have been savvy enough to recognise the need to provide proof of their effectiveness.

The Design Business Association (DBA) runs an effectiveness awards scheme in an attempt to boost commercial awareness in the design industry. John Mathers, chief executive of Enterprise IG, is involved in the awards, but admits there is still plenty of work to be done on demonstrating the effect of design agencies' work on their clients' bottom line. 'The industry doesn't do this particularly well at the moment,' he says. 'A lot of people in design do not understand the need for it yet.'

Commercial focus

A further issue is the approach taken to new business by many agencies. According to Allison McSparron-Edwards, managing director of Consultrix, a consultancy that works with marketing services agencies, design shops still tend to flit from project to project, instead of trying to building a long-term relationship with a client to gain repeat work. 'Agencies are struggling to grow because they are not spending time on client relationships - they're always trying to win new business,' she says. 'If they spent more time managing the clients they have, they would be more profitable.'

DBA chief executive Deborah Dawton believes that this is partly due to the fact that the idea of taking a more business-focused approach does not sit well with the way many creative-minded people in the industry like to see themselves. 'These demands put pressure on designers to act in a way that is almost counter-intuitive,' she says. 'Putting a number against your work does not always come easily to creative people.'

Nevertheless, many designers recognise the need to become more commercially minded. Tayburn's Davidson admits it has been a 'rude awakening', while Jeff Kindleysides, managing director of Checkland Kindleysides, whose clients include Timberland, concedes that the industry has to become less inward-looking and more involved across the client's business. 'This last year has been good for us,' he says. 'Generally, clients expect a wider involvement than they did before. They are looking for agencies continually to challenge what they are doing. We have to be more worldly and more relevant.'

For all the industry's self-criticism, there is a client role in this process. Many agencies complain of poorly developed briefs, especially in areas such as packaging, where the commissioning client is likely to be relatively junior. Dawton also believes that clients should share more data with their agencies to help them prove a return.

To their credit, some clients have taken steps to make their agencies' lives easier - for example, by paying them to participate in pitches. 'We are starting to see a few enlightened clients willing to (contribute to the cost of) pitches,' says Fitch managing director Lucy Unger. 'It is a sign of the growing importance of design and branding to them.'

While this sort of action will help, the feeling among the design industry remains that change has to come from within. None of the challenges facing its practitioners is especially new, but what has marked out the design industry over the past year is a sustained determination to address them. Indeed, the 'Keep British Design Alive' site is a clear sign that the industry is at last taking these issues seriously.

Encouraging collective action in such a disparate industry will be far from easy, though. 'There is a big difference between two talented people in Soho and a big international firm,' argues Imagination chief executive Gary Withers. 'Getting an industry voice is hard - many people do not want to sign up.'

Yet a joint strategy is vital if the sector is to achieve its aims. The Design Skills Advisory Panel, whose members are drawn from across the sector, is one body that has stated its goal for the UK design industry - that 'by 2020, (it) will be viewed by buyers around the world as the global epicentre of high-value creative skills and design-led innovation'. Despite the undoubted quality of UK design, today's margin-starved, self-censorious industry clearly needs to work on its client relationships.

TOP DESIGN AGENCIES

Rnk Agency Fee income Fee income %
2005 2004 chng
(pounds) (pounds)
1 Imagination Group 29,818,000 27,919,000 7
Wolff Olins* n/a 12,889,000 n/a
Jack Morton Europe* n/a 11,918,000 n/a
2 Jones Knowles Ritchie 8,109,000 6,298,000 29
3 Checkland Kindleysides 8,087,000 6,912,000 17
4 Radley Yeldar 7,450,000 6,750,000 10
Interbrand UK* n/a 6,613,000 n/a
5 Corporate Edge 6,572,738 7,867,842 -16
Fitch* n/a 6,415,000 n/a
6 Design Bridge 6,391,000 6,793,000 -6
7 Vibrandt Starchamber 6,241,000 5,613,000 11
8 Loewy 5,007,524 3,465,753 44
9 Start Creative 4,916,000 4,685,000 5
10 Rufus Leonard 4,515,000 4,230,000 7
11 Nucleus 4,300,000 1,700,000 153
12 Elmwood Design 4,270,000 3,240,000 32
Lambie-Nairn* 4,175,294 3,877,250 8
13 Redhouse Lane Communications 4,142,481 2,828,070 46
Coley Porter Bell* 3,959,436 4,382,172 -10
14 Tynan D'Arcy 3,800,000 3,850,000 -1
15 Navyblue 3,761,000 3,701,000 2
16 Coutts Retail Communications 3,461,000 6,780,000 -49
Conran Design Group* n/a 3,425,000 n/a
17 Allen International 3,339,000 2,389,000 40
Pauffley* 3,336,265 3,308,478 1
18 The Team Brand Comms Consultants 3,298,801 3,141,315 5
19 Dragon Brand Consulting 3,175,000 2,949,000 8
20 Emperor Design 3,072,000 2,806,000 9
21 SAS 3,029,000 2,565,000 18
22 Wardour Publishing & Design 2,889,300 2,255,700 28
23 BR&Me (formerly Brewer Riddiford) 2,789,462 2,891,363 -4
24 Dalziel & Pow 2,760,141 2,691,931 3
25 Carnegie Orr 2,714,000 2,870,000 -5
26 Tayburn 2,711,467 2,504,720 8
27 Webb Scarlett deVlam 2,704,228 2,394,191 13
28 Oakwood Design Consultants 2,670,000 2,030,000 32
Springer & Jacoby* n/a 2,640,579 n/a
29 Linney Design 2,628,740 2,352,790 12
30 Bostock & Pollitt 2,607,620 2,428,621 7
31 Pearlfisher 2,546,000 2,488,000 2
32 Glazer 2,340,000 1,710,000 37
33 Small Back Room 2,300,000 1,600,000 44
34 Boxer 2,237,000 1,898,000 18
35 Precedent Communications 2,150,000 1,900,000 13
36 Exposure Design 1,998,716 1,833,193 9
37 SiebertHead 1,990,000 1,860,000 7
38 Uffindellwest 1,952,579 1,226,558 59
39 Parker Williams Design 1,912,000 1,880,762 2
40 Turquoise 1,832,140 834,791 119
41 Stocks Taylor Benson 1,810,000 1,853,000 -2
CGI London* 1,752,729 2,073,757 -15
42 Din Associates 1,727,830 2,299,598 -25
43 P&W 1,680,000 1,440,000 17
44 Ratcliffe Fowler Design 1,620,000 2,000,000 -19
45 Designhouse Consultants 1,495,000 1,380,000 8
46 Creative Leap 1,476,754 1,419,904 4
47 LMC Design 1,429,896 1,200,000 19
48 Chaos Design 1,408,000 n/a n/a
49 WK360 1,400,000 1,300,000 8
The Partners* 1,309,577 2,603,955 -50
50 JHP 1,259,611 1,307,710 -4
51 Dutton Merrifield 1,211,756 1,270,366 -5
52 An Agency Called England 1,207,742 1,149,054 5
53 Cada Design Group 1,200,000 1,400,000 -14
54 Creative Lynx 1,188,265 911,010 30
55 35 Communications 1,142,030 682,485 67
56 N1 Creative 1,127,007 716,813 57
57 Wyatt International 1,068,296 1,007,826 6
58 Ziggurat Brand Consultants 1,014,054 910,331 11
59 Carter Wong Tomlin 971,402 1,302,354 -25
60 Rare Corporate Design 953,470 896,330 6
61 Turnbull Ripley Design 946,719 627,791 51
62 Point 6 Design 861,513 748,906 15
63 WPA Pinfold 852,270 896,249 -5
64 Pierrot Print & Design 801,235 770,000 4
65 Shelton Fleming 776,784 615,139 26
66 Hey Moscow 775,156 567,062 37
67 Robson Dowry Associates 733,562 856,228 -14
68 Independent Marketing 697,000 510,000 37
69 Avvio Design Assoicates 650,000 450,000 44
70 Spencer Du Bois 631,505 601,188 5
71 Mansfields Design 600,000 900,000 -33
72 Brand Design Consultants 566,000 712,000 -21
73 Like a River 411,000 409,000 0
74 Bryt 382,729 264,497 45
75 Minima Design 364,000 325,000 12
76 CMAS 164,000 129,250 27
77 Haygarth 117,782 158,299 -26


Rnk Agency Turnover Turnover % Staff
2005 2004 chng
(pounds) (pounds)
1 Imagination Group 94,416,000 92,849,000 2 383
Wolff Olins* n/a 17,496,000 n/a 116
Jack Morton Europe* n/a 64,508,000 n/a 72
2 Jones Knowles Ritchie 10,638,401 8,257,751 29 79
3 Checkland Kindleysides 10,502,000 8,260,000 27 85
4 Radley Yeldar 12,028,488 10,778,227 12 83
Interbrand UK* n/a 9,931,000 n/a 81
5 Corporate Edge 7,880,941 9,715,176 -19 85
Fitch* n/a 7,547,000 n/a 80
6 Design Bridge 8,486,000 9,230,000 -8 81
7 Vibrandt Starchamber 7,712,000 7,100,208 9 71
8 Loewy 11,694,177 6,527,983 79 125
9 Start Creative 5,493,414 5,234,457 5 64
10 Rufus Leonard 5,491,000 4,853,000 13 60
11 Nucleus 5,726,239 2,356,082 143 46
12 Elmwood Design 5,260,000 4,170,000 26 66
Lambie-Nairn* 5,971,610 5,427,331 10 36
13 Redhouse Lane Communications 5,007,043 3,693,079 36 60
Coley Porter Bell* 5,141,152 5,149,840 0 40
14 Tynan D'Arcy 4,712,000 4,840,000 -3 36
15 Navyblue 6,828,371 7,248,124 -6 70
16 Coutts Retail Communications 29,937,000 33,900,000 -12 300
Conran Design Group* n/a 4,269,000 n/a 48
17 Allen International 3,712,000 2,708,000 37 19
Pauffley* 3,891,739 3,593,928 8 31
18 The Team Brand Comms Consultants 4,918,171 4,812,865 2 45
19 Dragon Brand Consulting 3,735,000 3,742,000 0 35
20 Emperor Design 4,943,000 4,195,000 18 48
21 SAS 5,479,000 4,551,347 20 37
22 Wardour Publishing & Design 3,852,455 3,007,603 28 41
23 BR&Me (formerly Brewer Riddiford) 2,882,987 3,130,717 -8 25
24 Dalziel & Pow 2,958,760 2,841,621 4 44
25 Carnegie Orr 4,600,000 4,400,000 5 26
26 Tayburn 4,626,150 4,695,210 -1 40
27 Webb Scarlett deVlam 3,187,481 3,000,648 6 18
28 Oakwood Design Consultants 2,990,000 2,260,000 32 28
Springer & Jacoby* n/a 5,798,792 n/a 40
29 Linney Design 7,071,793 4,727,540 50 47
30 Bostock & Pollitt 4,348,163 3,673,984 18 30
31 Pearlfisher 3,586,000 3,705,000 -3 45
32 Glazer 3,260,000 2,410,000 35 18
33 Small Back Room 3,900,000 3,100,000 26 27
34 Boxer 3,384,000 2,814,000 20 30
35 Precedent Communications 2,290,000 2,020,000 13 37
36 Exposure Design 3,251,283 2,924,749 11 25
37 SiebertHead 2,480,000 2,450,000 1 29
38 Uffindellwest 2,643,881 1,474,110 79 20
39 Parker Williams Design 2,310,000 2,044,000 13 25
40 Turquoise 2,908,499 1,669,533 74 22
41 Stocks Taylor Benson 2,645,746 2,776,597 -5 26
CGI London* 2,149,190 3,022,088 -29 16
42 Din Associates 1,822,650 2,424,375 -25 13
43 P&W 1,750,000 1,500,000 17 14
44 Ratcliffe Fowler Design 1,799,698 2,218,885 -19 14
45 Designhouse Consultants 1,605,000 1,502,000 7 20
46 Creative Leap 1,677,413 1,674,397 0 19
47 LMC Design 2,123,765 1,695,000 25 23
48 Chaos Design 1,761,580 n/a n/a 16
49 WK360 4,140,414 3,997,051 4 47
The Partners* 3,419,464 5,257,624 -35 36
50 JHP 1,359,611 1,407,710 -3 17
51 Dutton Merrifield 1,450,710 1,518,759 -4 22
52 An Agency Called England 3,350,192 4,088,482 -18 51
53 Cada Design Group 2,600,000 2,100,000 24 15
54 Creative Lynx 3,018,317 2,524,445 20 31
55 35 Communications 1,718,000 1,131,000 52 16
56 N1 Creative 1,257,453 895,188 40 21
57 Wyatt International 4,594,514 4,499,133 2 32
58 Ziggurat Brand Consultants 1,181,031 1,035,205 14 14
59 Carter Wong Tomlin 1,091,378 1,356,833 -20 14
60 Rare Corporate Design 1,393,388 1,166,927 19 11
61 Turnbull Ripley Design 1,413,632 989,170 43 13
62 Point 6 Design 956,865 868,131 10 18
63 WPA Pinfold 1,185,671 1,176,361 1 16
64 Pierrot Print & Design 1,456,791 1,400,000 4 12
65 Shelton Fleming 2,558,403 2,891,723 -12 15
66 Hey Moscow 1,439,874 947,836 52 13
67 Robson Dowry Associates 941,422 1,169,247 -19 14
68 Independent Marketing 881,000 699,000 26 10
69 Avvio Design Assoicates 4,400,000 4,100,000 7 42
70 Spencer Du Bois 873,993 822,925 6 8
71 Mansfields Design 2,890,000 3,700,000 -22 9
72 Brand Design Consultants 1,620,000 1,550,000 5 9
73 Like a River 1,093,000 1,034,000 6 10
74 Bryt 537,973 373,150 44 10
75 Minima Design 409,000 365,000 12 10
76 CMAS 1,341,776 1,685,336 -20 11
77 Haygarth 2,446,699 2,516,264 -3 141


Rnk Agency
1 Imagination Group
Founded 1978. Privately owned. Chairman Gary Withers. No specialisms
disclosed. Clients include Ford, Ericsson, Samsung. Member DBA.
www.imagination.com
Wolff Olins*
Founded 1965. Subsidiary Omnicom. Managing director Charles Wright.
No specialisms disclosed. No clients disclosed. www.wolff-olins.com
Jack Morton Europe*
Founded 1976. Subsidiary Interpublic. Joint managing directors
Jeremy Garbett, Julian Pullan. No specialisms disclosed. No clients
disclosed. www.jackmorton.co.uk
2 Jones Knowles Ritchie
Founded 1990. Privately owned. Chief executive Andrew Knowles. 100%
packaging. Clients include Unilever, RHM Foods, Britvic. Member DBA.
www.jkr.co.uk
3 Checkland Kindleysides
Founded 1979. Privately owned. Joint managing directors Jeff
Kindleysides, Claire Callaway. 62% retail/interiors, 33% corp lit,
2% corp ID, 1% exhibitions, 1% packaging, 1% web. No clients
disclosed. www.checkind.com
4 Radley Yeldar
Founded 1986. Privately owned. Managing director Carl Radley. 76%
corp lit, 14% corp ID, 10% web. Clients include Aviva, Capita,
Rolls-Royce. www.ry.com
Interbrand UK*
Founded 1974. Subsidiary Omnicom. Chief executive John Allert. No
specialisms disclosed. No clients disclosed. www.interbrand.com
5 Corporate Edge
Founded 1972. Privately owned. Chief executive Simon Lake. 36% corp
lit, 29% corp ID, 16% retail/interiors, 15% web, 4% product. Clients
include Tesco, Cadbury Schweppes, Diageo. Member DBA.
www.corporateedge.com
Fitch*
Founded 1973. Subsidiary WPP. Managing partner Lucy Unger. 50%
retail/interiors, 35% corp ID, corp lit 10%, exhibitions 5%. Clients
include BAT, Vodafone, 2006 Asian Games. Member DBA. www.fitch.com
6 Design Bridge
Founded 1986. Privately owned. Chairman Sir William Goodenough. 90%
packaging, 10% corp ID. Clients include Unilever, Muller Dairy, Sara
Lee. www.designbridge.com
7 Vibrandt Starchamber
Founded 1993. Subsidiary Sandom Group. Chairman Ray Armes. 100%
packaging. Clients include Nestle, Unilever, PepsiCo.
www.thestarchamber.co.uk
8 Loewy
Founded 1929. Privately owned. Chief executive Charlie Hoult. 43%
corp lit, 32% packaging, 12% exhibitions, 8% corp ID, 5% web.
Clients include BAA, Nestle Purina, BP. www.loewygroup.com
9 Start Creative
Founded 1996. Subsidiary Start. Chairman Mike Curtis. 40% corp lit,
35% web, 25% corp ID. Clients include Virgin, BBC, Royal Mail.
Member DBA. www.startcreative.co.uk
10 Rufus Leonard
Founded 1989. Privately owned. Chairman Neil Svensen. 50% web, 30%
corp ID, 20% corp lit. Clients include BT, Lloyds TSB, O2.
www.rufusleonard.com
11 Nucleus
Founded 1979. Privately owned. Chairman Peter Matthews. 40% web, 25%
corp ID, 35% other. Clients include Orient-Express, Sodexho,
Standard Chartered Bank. Member DBA. www.nucleus.co.uk
12 Elmwood Design
Founded 1989. Privately owned. Chairman Jonathan Sands. 58%
packaging, 26% corp lit, 8% corp ID, 1% web, 7% other. Clients
include McCain, BBC, Boots. Member DBA. www.elmwood.co.uk
Lambie-Nairn*
Founded 1976. Subsidiary WPP. Chairman Martin Lambie-Nairn. No
specialisms disclosed. No clients disclosed. Member DBA.
www.lambie-nairn.com
13 Redhouse Lane Communications
Founded 1988. Privately owned. Managing director Jeremy Redhouse.
20% corp lit, 20% web, 10% corp ID, 50% other. Clients include DTI,
BAA. www.redhouselane.com
Coley Porter Bell*
Founded 1979. Subsidiary WPP. Chief executive Vicky Bullen. No
specialisms disclosed. No clients disclosed. Member DBA.
www.cpb.co.uk
14 Tynan D'Arcy
Founded 1991. Privately owned. Chairman Ian D'Arcy. 80% packaging,
10% corp lit, 10% retail/interiors. Clients include Bayer
Healthcare, Premier Foods, Hasbro. www.tynan-darcy.com
15 Navyblue
Founded 1994. Privately owned. MDs Geoff Nicol, Douglas Alexander.
39% corp lit, 20% web, 19% corp ID, 6% exhib, 6% packaging, 5% prod,
5% retail/interiors. Clients include Boots, London 2012. Member DBA.
www.navyblue.com
16 Coutts Retail Communications
Founded 1982. Subsidiary Media Square. Chairman Richard Saysell. 75%
retail/interiors, 10% corp ID, 5% corp lit, 4% exhibitions, 4%
packaging, 2% web. Clients include HBOS, Johnson & Johnson, 20th
Century Fox. www.crc-uk.com
Conran Design Group*
Founded 1956. Subsidiary Havas. Managing director David Worthington.
No specialisms disclosed. No clients disclosed. Member DBA.
www.conrandesigngroup.com
17 Allen International
Founded 1998. Privately owned. Chairman Michael Allen. 90%
retail/interiors, 10% corp lit. Clients include BNP Paribas, Glitnir
Bank, Standard Bank of South Africa. www.allen-international.com
Pauffley*
Founded 1984. Subsidiary Omnicom. Chief executive Nigel Pearcy. No
specialisms disclosed. Clients include CBP, BT, Barclays. Member
DBA. www.pauffley.com
18 The Team Brand Comms Consultants
Founded 1982. Privately owned. Managing director Julian Grice. 50%
corp ID, 30% corp lit, 20% web. Clients include DfES, Vodafone, BAA.
Member DBA. www.theteam.co.uk
19 Dragon Brand Consulting
Founded 1984. Privately owned. Chairman Dorothy MacKenzie. 54%
packaging, 46% corp ID. No clients disclosed. www.dragonbrands.com
20 Emperor Design
Founded 1996. Privately owned. Managing director Stephen Kemp. 70%
corp lit, 30% web. Clients include Stagecoach, Cairn Energy,
Deutsche Bank. www.emperordesign.co.uk
21 SAS
Founded 1989. Privately owned. Chairman Mike Freedman. 43% corp lit,
30% web, 27% corp ID. Clients include BT, Sainsbury's, Ernst &
Young. www.sasdesign.co.uk
22 Wardour Publishing & Design
Founded 1996. Privately owned. Chief executive Martin MacConnol. 83%
corp lit, 17% web. Clients include Camelot, Great Ormond Street
Hospital. www.wardour.co.uk
23 BR&Me (formerly Brewer Riddiford)
Founded 1992. Privately owned. Managing director George Riddiford.
99% packaging, 1% corp ID. Clients include Birds Eye Frozen Foods.
Member DBA. www.brandme.co.uk
24 Dalziel & Pow
Founded 1983. Privately owned. Creative director David Dalziel. 100%
retail/interiors. Clients include River Island, Primark, Gap. Member
DBA. www.dalziel-pow.co.uk
25 Carnegie Orr
Founded 1994. Privately owned. Creative director Richard Orr. 50%
corp lit, 30% corp ID, 20% web. Clients include Compass Group,
BSkyB, First Choice Holidays. Member DBA. www.carnegieorr.co.uk
26 Tayburn
Founded 1979. Subsidiary Tayburn Holdings. Chairman Erick Davidson.
55% corp lit, 30% packaging, 15% corp ID. Clients include Royal Bank
of Scotland, Scottish & Newcastle, Princes Foods. www.tayburn.co.uk
27 Webb Scarlett deVlam
Founded 1992. Privately owned. Chairman Ian Webb. 77% packaging, 15%
product, 8% corp ID. Clients include Procter & Gamble, Vin & Spirit,
Mobil. Member DBA. www.wsdv.com
28 Oakwood Design Consultants
Founded 1995. Privately owned. MD Tony Marwick. 53% corp lit, 20%
packaging, 10% corp ID, 9% web, 3% retail/interiors, 3% exhibitions,
2% product. Clients include Mattel, Comet, Hyundai. Member DBA.
www.oakwood-dc.com
Springer & Jacoby*
Founded 1999. Subsidiary Interpublic. Managing director Daniel
Blattler. No specialisms disclosed. No clients disclosed. www.sj.com
29 Linney Design
Founded 1980. Privately owned. Managing director Michael Fisher. 55%
corp lit, 25% web, 6% corp ID, 14% other. Clients include Yamaha
Motor Europe, Post Office, Coors Brewers. Member DBA. www.linney.com
30 Bostock & Pollitt
Founded 1987. Privately owned. Chief executive David Chapple. 40%
web, 35% corp lit, 20% corp ID, 5% exhibitions. Clients include BT,
Smith Group, Shire Pharmaceuticals. Member DBA.
www.bostockandpollitt.com
31 Pearlfisher
Founded 1992. Privately owned. Managing partner Mike Branson. 75%
packaging, 15% corp ID, 5% corp lit, 5% web. Clients include
Waitrose, Absolut, Unilever. Member DBA. www.pearlfisher.com
32 Glazer
Founded 1991. Privately owned. Chairman Ralph Glazer. 40% corp ID,
60% other. Clients include Network Rail, BAA, Welsh Assembly.
www.glazer.co.uk
33 Small Back Room
Founded 1991. Privately owned. Joint MDs John Rushton, Ian Tasney.
45% corp lit, 30% web, 10% exhibitions, 5% retail/interiors, 10%
other. Clients include BP, The Crown Estate, Bloomsbury Publishing.
www.smallbackroom.com
34 Boxer
Founded 1994. Subsidiary The Marketing Store. Chief executive David
Poole. 40% packaging, 10% corp ID, 10% retail/interiors, 10% web,
30% other. Clients include McDonald's, InBev, Urban Splash. Member
DBA. www.boxer.uk.com
35 Precedent Communications
Founded 1989. Privately owned. Managing director Paul Hoskins. 60%
web, 25% corp ID, 15% corp lit. Clients include Middlesex
University, Age Concern, Derbyshire County Council. Member DBA.
www.precedent.co.uk
36 Exposure Design
Founded 2000. Privately owned. MDs Tim Bourne, Raoul Shah. 48% web,
14% packaging, 12% retail/interiors, 10% prod, 8% exhib, 4% corp ID,
4% corp lit. Clients include The Walt Disney Co, Coca-Cola
Enterprises. www.exposurelondon.net
37 SiebertHead
Founded 1972. Subsidiary Enfranchise Ninety Three. Chairman Stuart
Hepburn. 100% packaging. Clients include Colgate-Palmolive,
Carlsberg, Kraft Foods. Member DBA. www.sieberthead.com
38 Uffindellwest
Founded 1989. Privately owned. Managing director Erika Uffindell.
34% corp lit, 27% corp ID, 39% other. Clients include RBS, Standard
Life, Corus. Member DBA. www.uffindellwest.com
39 Parker Williams Design
Founded 1990. Subsidiary Envoy Communications. Managing director
Kate Bradford. 88% packaging, 10% corp ID, 2% corp lit. Clients
include Sainsbury's, Coop Norden, Early Learning Centre. Member DBA.
www.parkerwilliamsdesign.co.uk
40 Turquoise
Founded 2003. Privately owned. Chairman Sharon Wheeler. 80% corp ID,
20% corp lit. Clients include NTL, Dubai Holdings, TV3.
www.turquoisebranding.com
41 Stocks Taylor Benson
Founded 1988. Privately owned. Managing director Glenn Taylor. 52%
retail/interiors, 30% packaging, 18% corp lit. Clients include
Blacks Leisure, Alliance & Leicester, Next. Member DBA.
www.stbdesign.co.uk
CGI London*
Founded 1988. Subsidiary Havas. Managing director Stephen Thomas. No
specialisms disclosed. No clients disclosed. www.cgibrandsense.com
42 Din Associates
Founded 1986. Privately owned. Chairman Rasshied Din. 94%
retail/interiors, 4% packaging, 2% corp ID. Clients include BAA,
French Connection, Marcol Group. Member DBA. www.din.co.uk
43 P&W
Founded 1987. Privately owned. Managing partners Simon Pemberton,
Adrian Whitefoord. 80% packaging, 8% corp ID, 8% corp lit, 4% web.
Clients include Tesco, Hill Station. Member DBA. www.p-and-w.com
44 Ratcliffe Fowler Design
Founded 1994. Privately owned. Chairman James Fowler. 70% corp lit,
25% retail/interiors, 5% corp ID. Clients include Sainsbury's,
Virgin, Signet. www.ratcliffefowlerdesign.com
45 Designhouse Consultants
Founded 1970. Privately owned. MD Lavinia Culverhouse. 40%
retail/interiors, 25% corp lit, 20% corp ID, 10% web, 5%
exhibitions. Clients include Alpha Airports, Ladbrokes, ABN AMRO.
Member DBA. www.designhouse.co.uk
46 Creative Leap
Founded 1996. Privately owned. Commercial director Trevor Bradford.
40% packaging, 25% corp ID, 15% corp lit, 10% retail/interiors, 10%
web. Clients include Pernod Ricard, Alliance UniChem. Member DBA.
www.creativeleap.com
47 LMC Design
Founded 1985. Privately owned. Chairman Max Cohen. 40% corp lit, 35%
packaging, 15% corp ID, 5% exhibitions, 5% web. Clients include
Carlsberg, Nestle, Merlin Entertainments. Member DBA.
www.lmcdesign.co.uk
48 Chaos Design
Founded 1972. Privately owned. Managing director Peter Campbell. 50%
corp lit, 35% corp ID, 15% web. Clients include Canon, BAA.
www.chaosdesign.com
49 WK360
Founded 1982. Subsidiary Page Character. Managing director Lawrence
Palmer. 40% corp lit, 30% retail/interiors, 20% packaging, 10%
exhibitions. Clients include Siemens, Cereal Partners, Toshiba.
www.wk360.com
The Partners*
Founded 1983. Subsidiary WPP. Managing partner Aziz Cami. No
specialisms disclosed. No clients disclosed. www.thepartners.co.uk
50 JHP
Founded 1979. Privately owned. Joint managing directors Steve
Collis, Raj Wilkinson. 60% retail/interiors, 20% corp ID, 10%
packaging, 10% exhibitions. Clients include BAA, Monsoon,
Selfridges. Member DBA. www.jhp-design.com
51 Dutton Merrifield
Founded 1988. Privately owned. Chairman David Merrifield. 40% corp
ID, 30% corp lit, 20% packaging, web 10%. Clients include 3, BSkyB,
Akzo Nobel. Member DBA. www.dutton-merrifield.co.uk
52 An Agency Called England
Founded 1991. Privately owned. Chairman Tony Stanton. 40% corp lit,
28% corp ID, 25% web, 5% exhibitions, 2% retail/interiors. Clients
include Bank of Ireland, Locate In Kent, Countryside Properties.
www.englandagency.com
53 Cada Design Group
Founded 1993. Privately owned. Chairman David Callcott. 25%
retail/interiors, 75% other. Clients include AMD, Intersport, Bagel
Factory. www.cadadesigngroup.co.uk
54 Creative Lynx
Founded 1986. Privately owned. MD Stuart Wilson. 70% corp lit, 10%
corp ID, 10% exhibitions, 10% web. Clients include North West
Development Agency, Novartis Pharmaceuticals, Serono International.
www.creativelynx.co.uk
55 35 Communications
Founded 2003. Privately owned. Chairman Richard Finmore. 58% corp
ID, 42% corp lit. Clients include Diageo, Home Office, Reed
Elsevier. www.35communications.com
56 N1 Creative
Founded 2001. Privately owned. Managing director Glenn Elliott. 41%
web, 30% corp ID, 29% corp lit. Clients include BBC, Sainsbury's. UK
Trade & Investment. Member DBA. www.n1creative.com
57 Wyatt International
Founded 1952. Privately owned. MD Brian Barrett. 40% corp lit, 30%
corp ID, 10% web, 5% exhibitions, 5% retail/interiors, 10% other.
Clients include RoSPA, BF Goodrich, Saint-Gobain Pipelines.
www.wyattinternational.com
58 Ziggurat Brand Consultants
Founded 1984. Privately owned. Managing director Adrian Collins. 90%
packaging, 10% corp ID. Clients include Imperial Tobacco,
Dairycrest, Nestle. Member DBA. www.zigguratbrands.com
59 Carter Wong Tomlin
Founded 1984. Privately owned. Director Phil Wong. 46% corp lit, 36%
packaging, 11% corp ID, 7% web. Clients include Wasa, Waitrose,
Royal Mail. Member DBA. www.carterwongtomlin.com
60 Rare Corporate Design
Founded 1962. Subsidiary Chime. Managing director Peter Higgins. 60%
corp lit, 25% corp ID, 15% web. Clients include Richemont, Cadbury
Trebor Bassett, Qatar Financial Centre Authority.
www.rarecorporate.co.uk
61 Turnbull Ripley Design
Founded 1989. Privately owned. Managing director Mark Turnbull. 50%
corp ID, 40% corp lit, 5% exhibitions, 5% web. Clients include
Bourne Leisure, English Heritage, Scottish Widows.
www.turnbullripley.co.uk
62 Point 6 Design
Founded 1993. Privately owned. MDs David Tulett, Jennifer Bradley.
40% packaging, 15% web, 10% corp ID, 10% corp lit, 10%
retail/interiors, 5% exhib, 10% other. Clients include Avent,
Vodafone. Member DBA. www.point6.co.uk
63 WPA Pinfold
Founded 1978. Privately owned. Managing director Myles Pinfold. 30%
corp lit, 25% corp ID, 20% packaging, 15% web, 10% retail/interiors.
Clients include Carlsberg, Asda, RWE Npower. Member DBA.
www.wpa-pinfold.co.uk
64 Pierrot Print & Design
Founded 1992. Privately owned. Chairman Andrew Campbell. 55% corp
lit, 20% web, 10% corp ID, 10% exhibitions, 5% packaging. Clients
include Compass Group, British Board of Film Classification,
National Trust. www.pierrot.uk.com
65 Shelton Fleming
Founded 1982. Privately owned. Chairman Maurice Fleming. 90%
exhibitions, 10% other. Clients include Coca-Cola, BMW, The
Guardian. www.sheltonfleming.co.uk
66 Hey Moscow
Founded 2001. Privately owned. Managing director Liz Wakefield. 24%
corp lit, 21% corp ID, 17% web, 38% other. Clients include Southwark
Council, Asthma UK, Northgate Information Solutions.
www.heymoscow.com
67 Robson Dowry Associates
Founded 1976. Privately owned. MDs Ian Robson, Andy Sanders. 30%
corp ID, 30% corp lit, 30% packaging, 10% other. Clients include
Constellation Wines, Environment Agency, Met Office. Member DBA.
www.robsondowry.co.uk
68 Independent Marketing
Founded 1999. Privately owned. MDs Caroline Beecher, Arnold
Woodhouse. 40% corp lit, 30% corp ID, 20% web, 10% exhibitions.
Clients include Choice Hotels Europe, Warwick University.
www.independentmarketing.co.uk
69 Avvio Design Assoicates
Founded 1993. Privately owned. Chairman Roger Edwards. 30% web, 25%
exhibitions, 15% corp lit, 10% product, 10% retail/interiors, 5%
packaging, 5% corp ID. Clients include Vodafone, Motorola.
www.avvio.co.uk
70 Spencer Du Bois
Founded 2002. Privately owned. CEO Max Du Bois. 80% corp ID, 15%
corp lit, 5% web. Clients include Cambridge Assessment, DCMS,
International Planned Parenthood Federation. Member DBA.
www.spencerdubois.co.uk
71 Mansfields Design
Founded 1905. Privately owned. Chairman Ivor Frankland. 95%
exhibitions, 5% web. Clients include Ford, Jaguar, Birmingham City
Council. www.mansfieldsdesign.co.uk
72 Brand Design Consultants
Founded 1989. Privately owned. Managing director Tony Walton. 82%
retail/interiors, 9% corp lit, 4% web, 3% packaging, 2% corp ID.
Clients include Argos, The Body Shop, Boots. Member DBA.
www.branddesign.co.uk
73 Like a River
Founded 1996. Privately owned. Joint managing directors Rob Taylor,
Peter Rogers. 25% packaging, 15% corp ID, 10% corp lit, 50% other.
Clients include Co-operative Group, Christy Home, Bedcrest.
www.likeariver.co.uk
74 Bryt
Founded 1999. Privately owned. Managing director Eddie Stableford.
62% packaging, 18% corp ID, 10% corp lit, 5% web, 4%
retail/interiors. Clients include Marks & Spencer, Associated
British Foods, Premier Foods. www.bryt.co.uk
75 Minima Design
Founded 2005. Subsidiary M2FX. Managing director Tony Stockman. 100%
product. Clients include GlaxoSmithKline, BT, Olympus. Member DBA.
www.minima.co.uk
76 CMAS
Founded 1992. Privately owned. MD John Meakin. 59% corp lit, 8%
exhibitions, 3% packaging, 2% web, 1% corp ID, other 27%. Clients
include Fairview New Homes, Amber Homeloans, Homeloan Management.
www.cmas.co.uk
77 Haygarth
Founded 1984. Privately owned. Managing director Sophie Daranyi. 30%
exhibitions, 25% web 20% retail/interiors, 15% corp lit, 10% corp
ID. Clients include Nokia, Signet, Seiko. www.haygarth.co.uk

* Companies House financial data provided by Willott Kingston Smith for
agencies affected by the Sarbanes-Oxley Act

THE SARBANES-OXLEY EFFECT
For agencies affected by the US Sarbanes-Oxley Act, which restricts the
financial information firms can make public, we have used Companies
House data provided by Willott Kingston Smith. Gross profit has been
used to approximate fee income, and the agencies have been placed in the
table, but not ranked.

Affected companies are listed under group names. In some cases the
latest available data was for the 2004 financial year. No up-to-date
data could be found at Companies House for Landor Associates, Enterprise
IG, CDT Design, FBC (Futurebrand). They are therefore missing from the
table.



DATA FILE - TOP 5 BIG AGENCIES FOR GROWTH

Agency Fee income Fee income Change
2005 (pounds) 2004 (pounds) (%)
1 Nucleus 4,300,000 1,700,000 153
2 Redhouse Lane 4,142,481 2,828,070 46
Communications
3 Loewy 5,007,524 3,465,753 44
4 Allen International 3,339,000 2,389,000 40
5 Elmwood Design 4,270,000 3,240,000 32

Note: does not include Sarbanes-Oxley-affected agencies



DATA FILE - TOP 5 SMALL AGENCIES FOR GROWTH

Agency Fee income Fee income Change
2005 (pounds) 2004 (pounds) (%)
1 Turquoise 1,832,140 834,791 119
2 35 Communications 1,142,030 682,485 67
3 Uffindellwest 1,952,579 1,226,558 59
4 N1 Creative 1,127,007 716,813 57
5 Turnbull Ripley 946,719 627,791 51
Design

Note: does not include Sarbanes-Oxley-affected agencies

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