Saatchi & Saatchi

Published on .

2004 Rating: 1 star

The essence: Outside the U.S., Saatchi & Saatchi's reputation is rich (particularly in the U.K., its country of origin); inside, Saatchi is an enigma. In the recent past, it has simply focused on current blue-chip clients-Procter & Gamble Co. and General Mills-at the expense of building its presence and roster. That may change in 2005.

Net growth : Publicis Groupe-owned Saatchi finally achieved a long-sought goal of reeling in an airline, Air Tahiti Nui, in 2004. Saatchi in the U.S. added over-the-counter brands from Novartis Consumer Health (Theraflu and Triaminic) after faring well in a review that launched in Europe. It also had no losses. Any significant growth comes from current clients.

management: Saatchi Worldwide CEO Kevin Roberts hired the team of Mary Baglivo and Tony Granger. Ms. Baglivo, most recently at Havas' Arnold Worldwide, New York, was named CEO-worldwide marketing director and Mr. Granger, from Saatchi London, was picked as chief creative officer. Their mission: build Saatchi in terms of billings and awareness.

Creative quality and effectiveness: Saatchi is less about innovation and more about a tried-and-true approach. Prettily executed work for Cheerios resonates emotionally, but the message is tired. Old Spice spots use familiar insights into men, women and football to draw a laugh. Still, they fade considered next to work for Unilever's Axe. For Pillsbury, Saatchi extended the refrigerated frozen dough line into a new consumer segment-child-free adult couples-and increased share of dollars spent on frozen dinner rolls.

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