If there’s any agency flying under the radar in Australia right now it’s AJF. The independent started in Melbourne eight years ago by a bunch of former Clemenger staffers has revenue upwards of $20 million. It’s very close to being one of the biggest independent shops in the country and although AJF’s partners are intently publicity shy, AJF is a company which will increasingly have the spotlight on it.
Officeworks and News Limited are the agency’s biggest wins in the past year and the opening of its Sydney office a bit over two years ago has gone right against the supposed rule that Melbourne agencies can’t cut it in Australia’s biggest ad market. AJF’s four founding partners decided to back a former Clemenger Adelaide colleague, Digby Richards, into Sydney after he returned from a decade in Asia, running, among other things, WPP’s David, with around 1,000 staff.
AJF’s founders operate on the rule that most in adland are big talkers but don’t deliver. The company has some big brands across both offices, including Ergon, Caltex, Berri, Dairy Farmers, News Limited and RAMS.
In May, carmaker Holden expanded AJF’s remit following a protracted review, handing it the lion’s share of its creative account and adding Grey to work on a number of brands, while sidelining McCann.
It’s too late to say watch out for an up and comer. AJF, the dark horse, has already arrived. The only thing to watch for is how keen a multinational will be to get a piece of the action.
Sourced from AdNews Agency Report Card, May 31 2013 edition.
What they say:
A new generation, full service agency specialising in through-the-line strategic and creative communications for major companies and brands.