Advertising & Promotion: Agency of the Week: Lowe Howard-Spink

Lowe Howard-Spink had an excellent 1996, winning piles of new business from existing clients and losing just one account.

Lowe Howard-Spink had an excellent 1996, winning piles of new

business from existing clients and losing just one account.

Last week, the first work from those new accounts hit the Adwatch table,

in the form of Harry Enfield’s ’stroppy teena-ger’ character launching

Pillsbury Toaster Pockets.

While we wait for Dollond & Aitchison’s ’Burt Reynolds’ film to appear,

this week’s chart sees the arrival of the Saab 900 ad, which was

originated by the Lowe Group’s lead Saab agency, Lowe Brindfors, in

Sweden. The London agency’s Saab work will break later this year, as the

latest in a flurry of new campaigns at a busy time for the network,

which has announced a major restructuring.

A dollars 3.6bn (pounds 2.6bn) business, with 73 offices in 32

countries, the Lowe Group has now been split into four regions: Europe,

North America, Latin America and Asia Pacific.

Following the departure of chief executive David Jones to head DMB&B,

the European region will be run by Adrian Holmes and Jerry Judge,

leaving the London agency with a line-up of six.

Last year, the London group created Lowe Direct, set up Western

International Media and formed a new interactive media division, Lowe

Digital. Even with a new senior management and the influence of

’integration’, Lowe’s objectives remain the same: to produce big,

long-term campaigns for mainstream businesses.

Lowe Howard-Spink boasts just 25 clients - the shortest client list in

the top 10. Three-quarters of them have been with the agency for five

years and several have been their for 15 years, since Frank Lowe and

Geoff Howard-Spink rocked Collett Dickenson Pearce (CDP) by leading the

most successful breakaway in history.

Campaigns such as Stella Artois’s ’Reassuringly expensive’, Tesco’s

’Every little helps’ and Smirnoff’s ’Through the bottle’ work reinforce

the agency’s belief in high-quality, long-running ads.

Although hardly recognisable as the CDP breakaway, it still honours

Frank Lowe’s original objective: ’Outstanding advertising costs no more

than bad advertising, but eventually it becomes priceless.’ A glance at

the agency’s reel makes this irrefutable.


Projected billings: pounds 260m

Wins (in the past 12 months): Avis, Whitbread Fuggles, Boston Beer,

Hoegaarden Beer, Pillsbury Toaster Pockets, Labatts, Baileys

International, Saab, Dollond & Aitchison, The Express

Losses (in the past 12 months): Bauer Publishing

Key clients: Vauxhall, Tesco, IDV, Pierre Smirnoff, Whitbread, Lloyds

Bank, Reebok, Weetabix

Key people: Paul Weinberger (chairman and creative director), Tim

Lindsay (chief executive), Paul Hammersley (managing director), Marc

Cave, John Lowery and Richard Jameson (managing partners).


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