2013 was a year that the management at Frank PR would probably rather forget, after its two biggest clients, BlackBerry and Npower, headed for the door.
It is hard to see how the agency could have held on to either account. BlackBerry consolidated its global PR account into APCO and Text100 and scaled back consumer operations. Meanwhile, Npower consolidated all UK PR work into Golin, which coincided with the arrival of new corporate comms director Guy Esnouf from E.On.
Frank did not make any redundancies as a result, although the agency has six fewer staff than last year.
But despite the headline figure, chairman Graham Goodkind believes there were lots of positives from the year. "The number of clients was up nine per cent, income from our offices in the US and Australia increased by 28 per cent, and we still win 60 per cent of our pitches," says Goodkind. "We are not nearly as exposed as we were last year. We have more clients now but the average fee is lower," he adds.
Many of Frank’s competitive set have also seen a drop in income, suggesting that the consumer market was particularly tough last year.
On the bright side, the agency expanded its remit with Danone, and won First TransPennine Express, Chessington World of Adventures, Hammerson and Weetabix.
Key work included banning animal print from Chessington World of Adventures to stop it confusing the animals in the park’s new Zufari attraction. Anyone wearing it was issued with a grey boiler suit. Online bookings have gone up as a result.