PRWeek Awards - Midsize PR Agency of the Year

Winner

Chandler Chicco Agency

In a category whose shortlist was dominated by specialist firms, Chandler Chicco Agency, led by Gianfranco Chicco and Bob...

Winner

Chandler Chicco Agency

In a category whose shortlist was dominated by specialist firms, Chandler Chicco Agency, led by Gianfranco Chicco and Bob Chandler, checked all the boxes that the demanding judges needed: Impressive, steady growth over several years; leadership in its category (a highly competitive one); and a profound understanding of top-level service to clients and staff alike. While the firm has won for its performance in 2006, it is clear that CCA is not enjoying its first such year, but that it is seeing a continuation of its success over the past decade.

CCA boasts an impressive financial record, illustrated by its 10 consecutive years of double-digit growth. This timeframe includes the marketing recession of the late ’90s-early ’00s, and while its growth is testament in part to the relative robustness of the healthcare sector while others were struggling, it is also testament to an agency that clearly motivates its staff to do their best by its clients.

Revenues for 2005 were approximately $39 million, and the agency is predicting yet another double-digit increase. This comes in part from a stellar new-business record; CCA tells of its “nearly 100% new-business win rate,” with new clients on board including Allergan Lap-Band, J&J/McNeil Tylenol, and GSK Biologicals – the latter being a global assignment.

However, the year-on-year revenue boost also comes from organic growth. On average, says CCA, it has increased business with all its long-term clients 525% over the past three years. As one judge attested, “Increased growth from existing clients is always a good sign.”

Launching as a New York-based firm in 1995, CCA now has a wider footprint with expanded office spaces in Washington, DC, and London having opened this past year. Strategic alliances with networks including Mmd and Eastwei have gained CCA considerable inroads into Eastern and Central Europe, and Asia, respectively.

From its healthcare base, CCA has this past year branched out into wider areas. Partnering with Mehlman Vogel Castagnetti, CCA launched Health360Strategies, which takes a full-circle view of the healthcare business and media and public-policy climates to develop public affairs and PR programs. It also launched Brandtectonics, a branding division.

What particularly impressed judges, however, was the value CCA places on its staff. Development ranges from the fun – parties, lunches, personal trainers, massages and yoga, and activities for employees’ kids – to the educational, including its Phase IV professional development program offering multiple courses throughout the year, a quality-control, best-practices program called “A Moment Matters,” and its C3 Central online hub, which includes weekly e-newsletters.

As one judge put it, “New business, new staff, new offices... Chandler Chicco has had a great year!”

Honorable Mention

Text 100 Public Relations

With a high staff-retention rate and a commitment to developing its employees through training and promotions, Text was praised for its internal values. New business came from marquee names, including eBay, Philips Semiconductors, and Sprint Nextel. What particularly impressed judges, though, were its strides in bringing its clients to fluency in the digital world. Its entry into Second Life wasn’t without controversy, but it was a bold move befitting an agency that promises leadership in digital integration to its clients. Xerox, in particular, saw great results.

Finalists 2007

  • Bite Communications

  • Chandler Chicco Agency

  • French/West/Vaughan

  • Qorvis Communications

  • Text 100 Public Relations

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