MAA’s Agency of the Year 2022 is… VCCP London

Running a successful, stable business is not easy, but VCCP continues to do it with energy and honesty, year after year. It’s about time that MAA singled them out as our Agency of the Year. Other agencies to be shortlisted in a competitive year were adam&eveDDB, Mother, New Commercial Arts and Saatchi & Saatchi.

The benefits of a stable senior management team shine out in the agency’s new business record, which is the envy of the industry. VCCP won one of the biggest pitches of 2022, fending off competition from adam&eveDDB (a two-time MAA winner) for the newly-merged Virgin Media O2, and in doing so, the agency demonstrated the strength of its 20-year relationship with O2, one of its founding clients.

Other wins included General Mills’ Old El Paso, Dogs Trust and one of the UK’s least loved brands, Thames Water. VCCP isn’t afraid to take on challenges, shown also in its long relationship with easyJet and this year’s relaunch of unloved parcel carrier Hermes as Evri.

In 2022 the creative stepped up a notch too, with some memorable campaigns like Domino’s “Castaways” and Wickes “Open Up.” Best of all were “Set them free with Dairylea” and Cadbury’s “Secret Santa,” both for Mondelez. Winning the IPA Effectiveness Grand Prix for Cadbury was another sign that VCCP is at the top of its game.

Always pushing forwards, the agency launched CX agency Bernadette, and showed a healthy scepticism about the much-hyped metaverse by launching “multiverse” agency VCCP+ instead.

People-wise, VCCP still manages to make room for senior promotions, despite the stability at the top. Darren Bailes moved from ECD to global CCO at the start of the year, while Jonny Parker and Chris Birch shifted up to joint ECDs. Similarly, CSO Michael Lee moved up to a group role, while Clare Hutchison took over as CSO of the London agency.

Richard Nott, who was behind Engine’s “Long Live the Prince” Cannes Grand Prix, joined as a creative director. And, just to be sure that the new business momentum doesn’t let up, there were two new senior appointments in that department.

VCCP vice chairman Julian Douglas says: “2022 has been a turbulent year for the industry, so we are especially delighted to win this award. Challenging times require a challenger mindset and this award is testament to every person at VCCP who have delivered stellar work for clients whilst fostering a culture of belonging in our London HQ and our new Academy in Stoke.”

Looking ahead to 2023, VCCP is in a final shootout against Leo Burnett to win the National Lottery account from new operator Allwyn, and looks set to face a battle to keep long term client Nationwide following the appointment of a new marketing director. You wouldn’t bet against them.

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About Emma Hall

Emma Hall is a journalist and editorial consultant and is the former Europe Editor of Ad Age, where she covered European marketing advertising, digital and media stories. She has written for newspapers including the Financial Times, The Guardian, The Times and the Telegraph, and was previously a section editor at Campaign. Emma started her career in New York as a researcher for a biography of Keith Richards.

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