London agency Now finally finds a forward gear with £17m BT Business win

New London agency Now calls itself an “agency for the accelerated world” but in its early days the agency seemed to go into rapid reverse.

The agency was formed by former COI boss Mark Lund last year, seemingly with the £25m Waitrose account. But then creative Jeremy Carr decided to take the reins as a creative director at JWT and Waitrose promptly followed Carr’s partner Ken Hoggins to Bartle Bogle Hegarty, leaving Now firmly in the starting blocks.

Now, however, Now has had a stroke of luck with with RKCR/Y&R’s forced resignation of the BT Business account (telecoms services for SMEs basically) after it won rival Vodafone’s £47m account in an internal WPP pitch. Now has won the business, supposedly worth £17m, against stiff competition from TBWA (which also badly needs a win), Ogilvy & Mather and former M&C Saatchi man Nick Hurrell’s HMDG.

Lund (pictured), the ‘L’ in DLKW which was bought by Lowe a couple of years ago after a spell under Don Elgie’s wing at Creston, is a popular cove in London adland, which always helps, especially these days when agency match-makers are so influential in the process. Oystercatchers is the current flavour of the month with many clients (although not Sir Martin Sorrell and WPP) but this pitch was overseen by the venerable AAR.

A big win early on can make an agency. For Now it looked like Waitrose was it but the agency may now reflect that building yourself around an account that essentially follows its favourite creatives is a dangerous path to follow. Maybe BT Business will do the trick.

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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.