Omnicom’s adam&eveDDB has been named the (virtual) Cannes Lions European Agency of the Decade, pipping sibling AMV BBDO to the top spot – which won’t be any consolation at all to AMV which has seen A&E knock it off numerous perches including the UK’s biggest billing creative agency. Ogilvy Paris came a noteworthy third. A&E has been MAA’s Agency of the Year three times.
A&E has twice been the Cannes Lions Agency of the Year, been ranked in the top ten for seven years and the top five for six. So not much to argue with there.
Winning awards via Zoom (or whatever) ain’t quite the same and it’s tough on A&E, which seemed to survived the impending departure of co-founders James Murphy and David Golding in great shape, to run smack bang into Covid-19 just when everything seemed to be going so well. Omnicom has taken a tough line on lay-offs in the crisis and A&E will surely suffer too. To add insult to injury its Halifax account has abruptly departed for Murphy and Golding’s New Commercial Arts although it’s kept the Lloyds Bank business.
Campaigns for John Lewis and Marmite were noted especially for the awards, Cannes Lions owner Ascential’s WARC saying: What these campaigns indicate is that much of the agency’s best work commits to a creative idea that builds on the brand at hand rather than reinventing the wheel. Prior work was a springboard for fame, creating memories over the long term.”
Hard to argue that with that either but A&E, like other hitherto successful agencies now has the challenge of adapting to a radically different landscape. Joint CEOs Tammy Einav and Mat Goff with CCO Richard Brim and CSO Alex Hesz seem to have moved seamlessly into the vacancies left by Murphy, Golding and Ben Priest but now they have to do a lot of it all over again. New Commercial Arts on the scene won’t make their life any easier.