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MEC’s Wavemaker leads media agency content charge

WPP media agency MEC is making perhaps the boldest move yet by a media agency into creative by launching new content outfit Wavemaker.

The new division will bring MEC’s content, access and organic performance offerings under one roof. The purpose being to identify where content can deliver “measurable business impact.”

MEC-WavemakerSo will MEC’s Wavemaker produce ads (or content)? MEC UK CEO Jason Dormieux says: “We’re hugely excited by the UK launch of MEC Wavemaker. Clients understand the increasing importance of developing purposeful content strategies. Bringing together the various elements of our business that are involved with content will enable us to accelerate our work for clients in this vital area and enable us to continue to deliver effective communication strategies for them.”

That sounds like strategy but once you take over planning, which this seems to imply, you might as well finish the job.

Wavemaker will employ around 750 people worldwide with 100 in the UK. In the UK it will be led by organic performance MD Ben McKay and content MD Matt Davies. Tim Flattery, currently chief innovation officer of MEC Australia, will be global CEO.

Media agencies have been inching into creative/content for some time now although most of the ads they’ve produced have been complete rubbish. You need bolshie creatives to stand up to clients and that’s not the media agency way. The big marcoms companies, like WPP which owns MEC, also have lots of creative agencies of course although they seem to be becoming less important in the grand scheme of things.

But is it really a good idea to have your various agencies eating each other’s lunch?


The Drum has reported that Omnicom’s new P&G based media agency is going to be called Hearts and Sciences. Or maybe that’s Hearts & Science(s). Whatever next in media agency land? Kind Hearts & Coronets?

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About Stephen Foster

Stephen is a former editor of Marketing Week and London Evening Standard advertising columnist. He wrote City Republic for Brand Republic and is a partner in communications consultancy The Editorial Partnership.
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