Euro RSCG is the biggest ad agency worldwide by number of global clients

For the fifth year in a row apparently, according to Ad Age’s latest Global Marketers report which adds up the numbers.

Euro RSCG, which recently added Reckitt Benkiser’s new Durex and Scholl brands, handles 72 global accounts and works with 83 of the top 100 advertisers worldwide. By billings though the agency is fifth-largest, according to its own estimates.

This puts it ahead of more venerable industry names such as McCann Erickson (still probably the biggest by billings), BBDO, Ogilvy and Young & Rubicam although Euro does have the benefit of being the only truly global agency within the Havas holding company, rather like Dentsu in Dentsu.

The likes of McCann and the WPP and Omnicom-owned agencies in particular have to compete with other big brands in the holding company. This is a particular nuisance for these agencies when big clients approach the holding company boss first, as many of them do these days. Havas boss Vincent Bollore only has Euro to point them to as his other agency Arnold is mainly in the US.

But Euro, under fearsomely well-connected boss David Jones, a sort of global Johnny Hornby, has done fearsomely well on the back of what we might call second-tier global clients, ambitious companies (like RB) anxious to challenge the likes of Procter & Gamble and Unilever.

And its success testifies to the way the French have managed to challenge the US on the world stage. Although Euro is headquartered in New York, Havas is French as is the number three holding company Publicis Groupe.

The Euro in Euro RSCG comes from a French outfit called Eurocom which merged with RSCG, itself founded by Frenchmen Bernard Roux and Jacques Seguela, in 1991. For years it struggled to establish a convincing global presence but its move to New York in 1997 and subsequent appointment of Jones to the top job have clearly worked wonders.

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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.