|According to Gunn Report tabulations, Nike and Wieden & Kennedy were the world's most-acclaimed advertising team this year.
> List of Top Agency Winners
|See and view selections for the world's five most award-winning TV spots.
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This year is also the first time a U.S. office has headed the ranking of top 50 agencies.
Top agency network
At the advertising agency network level, Omnicom Group's BBDO Worldwide, which has scored first or second every year, reclaimed the top slot and bumped last year's top network, Leo Burnett Worldwide, down to fifth place. Second place went to Saatchi & Saatchi, buoyed by the U.K. agency's winning streak. Both Leo Burnett and Saatchi are now owned by Publicis Groupe.
Saatchi London was behind the most-awarded and most notorious print campaign of the year, three controversial ads for raunchy Club 18-30 Holidays that at first glance look like harmless holiday horseplay but on closer inspection are intricately art-directed simulations of sexual acts.
"Many BBDO offices were the best in their market," said Mr. Gunn, citing the U.K., Spain, South Africa and Brazil as countries where local BBDO offices swept national creative awards, scoring Gunn Report points. And this year BBDO's New York agency was among the top 10 most awarded individual agency offices for the first time, he said.
32 TV and 20 print contests
The Gunn Report, to be released this week, was sponsored by Unilever and compiled by Mr. Gunn, a former Leo Burnett creative director and longtime analyst of award-winning creative work. Mr. Gunn monitors 32 TV and 20 print competitions to rank the best-performing networks, individual agency offices, commercials and print ads.
In this year's biggest change, Wieden charged up the ranking to finish first among the top 50 agencies after disappearing from the top 50 list last year.
Wieden did three Nike spots -- "Tag," "Shade Runner" and "Freestyle" -- that ranked among the 10 most-awarded commercials. And Nike's print campaign "Enjoy the weather" scored fifth among all print ads.
Most awarded advertiser
Award show judges gave the Nike work so many trophies that the sports shoe marketer was the world's most-awarded advertiser, the first year Volkswagen hasn't been No. 1. This year is also the first time a U.S. office has headed the ranking of top 50 agencies.
In other highlights, the most-awarded single commercial -- and best performance by a couch -- was Lowe & Partners Worldwide's U.K. Reebok spot in which a sofa tries to keep its couch potato by chasing a man around his home to stop him from leaving for the gym. Lowe is an Interpublic Group of Cos. agency.
In a surprise upset, Germany was the fourth most-awarded country, a spot that usually belongs to Brazil, after the U.S., the U.K. and Spain. Although German advertising is rarely considered creative, the country's three hottest shops all had good years: Springer & Jacoby, Hamburg; Scholz & Friends, Berlin; and Jung von Matt, Hamburg and Munich.