Clearly, Saatchi & Saatchi is looking to spin fast into an aggressive growth orbit. And it is showing in the agency's output, to begin with.
First, the Bangalore branch of the agency won a One Show Pencil this month. The Mumbai office followed it up by winning a Clio for its entry for Ariel in the outdoor (billboard), in Home Products category, a formal announcement on which is expected on May 19 this year.
Saatchi's winning entry at One Show is a six-foot long poster for a global cancer research organisation called the Terry Fox Foundation. The poster was used to invite people for an annual run. About 4,000 people turned up for the event, in the process, raising Rs 6 lakh on a single day for cancer research.
The work that cut through for Ariel was an outdoor campaign done in Mumbai. "We had a stark white vinyl hoarding and nothing else. At the bottom right corner was the Ariel logo. On top we had two gigantic clips like the ones used on a clothesline," Kamal Basu, executive vice-president, Saatchi, Mumbai, told agencyfaqs!. He, however, conceded that the agency would only know in May if the Clio Statue is a Gold or a Silver.
Incidentally, the same campaign has won at the Asian Ad Fest held in Bangkok earlier this year, besides picking up a Gold at the Abbys. The agency has also won a Pencil nomination for the Vigorex brand from Zandu this year.
Saatchi & Saatchi's search for creative excellence is best represented by the people spearheading the movement at the agency. Vineet Singh Hukmani, for instance, who heads Bangalore branch, has worked for BPL Innovision and WorldSpace before joining the agency in October 2001. He says, "I have two passions - ideas and music. My passion for ideas is fulfilled by Saatchi & Saatchi. Our clients share every aspect of their business processes with us, they have seen first hand how an 'ideas agency' works and how we are different from a conventional ad agency."
Hukmani is not raving without reason. The agency has set for itself a clear focus to invest in talent. Recently it roped in Ryan Menezes (as vice-president, creative, in Bangalore), who happens to be the country's first Cannes Gold winner in 1996. Also on board is Sean Colaco (ex-Grey), who works out of the Mumbai office, and ex-BPL hand Anand Narasimhan, who is heading the Delhi branch now.
Says Ramesh Ramanathan, national creative director, "Last year, we told ourselves that Saatchi should become the most desirable agency for all creative people. We describe ourselves as an `ideas company' and while awards are not an end in themselves, they are a currency of recognition against which one measures oneself. We believe passionately in transformational work - work that has the ability to transform the business for our clients. To that extent Saatchi is very clear that is will never try to outshine others by putting up `scam' work for the sake of bagging awards," he said. © 2003 agencyfaqs!