2005 Agency Business Report: <strong>PEPPERCOM </strong>

Steve Cody, CEO

2004 revenue: $8,133,386

2003 revenue: $7,049,124

Up 15%

Number of offices: Three - New York, San Francisco and London

Staff numbers: Current headcount is 61 in the US, 10 in the UK, an increase of 13% in the US and 150% in the UK over 2003.

Staff turnover: Just under 15%

Senior hires this year (VP and higher)? Patricia Harden joined as senior director/general manager for the San Francisco office, from Gibbs & Soell.

What region is growing? The UK in particular - in 2004, billings in the London office increased by over 213%.

Practice areas: Corporate, consumer, financial, community relations, b-to-b

What areas were strong, and weak? Corporate, consumer, financial and b-to-b were all strong; technology was weak.

Distribution of accounts across practice areas: B-to-b, 30%; consumer marketing, 20%; financial PR, 25%; crisis communications, 17%; community relations, 8%.

Key account wins: AT&T, Bayview Financial, Fremont Group, Fireman's Fund Insurance, Genworth Financial, Honeywell, Retail Decisions, The SUV Safety Campaign, Tyco, Unisys.

Key account losses: Telosa, BT North America, Henkel Communications.

Did you expand any existing accounts into new domestic or international markets? Yes. We expanded GE, Tyco and AT&T into international markets.

Proportion of clients on a retainer: Approximately 80%.

Did revenues meet expectations? Exceeded them.

Outlook: The past year solidified the turnaround evident in Peppercom, which worked hard to shake off its woes from the downturn. "What we have done especially well is attract and retain blue-chip clients," says managing partner Steve Cody. Cody says his midsize firm "routinely" competes with the large shops. One of the lessons learned in the downturn was to build a balanced client roster to avoid the financial pitfalls of losing one critical piece of business. "One client loss, unlike two or three years ago, won't kill Peppercom," Cody says.

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