Not many departing ad agencies get trophies on their way out the door. But in typically polite fashion, P&G honored shops soon to be dropped from its roster and highlighted their work in special presentations.
As its P&G staff is dispersed among five sibling shops globally, Publicis Groupe's D'Arcy Masius Benton & Bowles, which handled Crest and Charmin, saw its brand teams take or share four of P&G's global honors. That tied them with sibling Saatchi & Saatchi, and bested survivors Grey Global Group and Leo Burnett Worldwide, which scored three and two, respectively.
Saatchi and Burnett shared in arguably the biggest honor, the R.V. Goldstein Award, named after the late P&G VP-advertising, for the Head & Shoulders brand team's double-digit global growth.
Havas' Arnold McGrath, which lost all its P&G business in the realignment, had a role in two awards-one a lifetime achievement honor for Chairman-CEO Pat McGrath, who did not attend the event.
Somewhat ironically, the Bounty brand team behind the agency's biggest account shared in "best client team" honors, having been nominated by Arnold McGrath. "Thanks to our partners at Arnold McGrath, we know [Bounty's] future will be bright," said Tarang Amin, Bounty marketing director, in accepting the honor.
Mark Ketchum, P&G's President-Global Paper, recounted how Mr. McGrath had worked his way onto P&G's roster through a four-year correspondence with Mr. Goldstein that started in 1981. He said the agency's work helped Bounty grow from a $500 million brand with a 21% U.S. market share in 1989 to a $1.6 billion brand with a 42% share currently.
"This is a bittersweet situation," said Michael Kehoe, VP-global oral care, in accepting an award for best category building for Crest, handled by D'Arcy since the brand's inception in the 1950s, when agency forbear Benton & Bowles was at the helm. "They will shut their doors on Jan. 1, but leave a great legacy on this brand."