2001 Rating: 2 stars
Like the athletes depicted in its ads, Wieden & Kennedy sent its creative sprinting once again for Nike, picking up so many plaudits that the shop topped the Gunn Report list of most awards won by an ad agency. Creative also is moving into the Madison+Vine space with Wieden, a pioneer, following up on its groundbreaking "Road to Paris" Nike documentary with two other projects-a look at Roy Jones Jr. preparing for the John Ruiz fight, and Marion Jones' 2004 Olympics quest. Its W&K/Enter-tainment unit is also developing "Ball," a basketball-inspired Broadway musical.
Financially, Wieden met a goal: more than half its billings and profits coming from offices outside the Portland, Ore., headquarters. Despite a lackluster new-business record in the Portland and New York offices, Wieden's Amsterdam, London and Tokyo units were strong, and clients are spreading their business among several offices in the independent agency's network. Although Coca-Cola Co. consolidated at Interpublic Group of Cos. shops, Wieden managed to keep Powerade.
Wieden still needs to parlay its high-profile work with world-class brands into power at the new-business table. On the upside, will clients at some point tire of the conflicts found in holding company-owned shops and turn to value an old-fashioned independent network?