The Directory Big Won rankings for 2016 are out, and while Australia pulled rank against the many creative countries of the world, it was New Zealand that proved the true dark horse.
Australia as a creative powerhouse fell from its position in third place last year, behind the US and UK, to fifth spot in 2015, following New Zealand and the UAE, ranked 14 and eight in 2015, respectively.
The rankings were compiled from close to 4000 separate pieces of creative work by 1673 agencies, including – among others – 2,543 art directors, 2,423 creative directors, and 950 executive creative directors.
But it was in the category of Top Agencies For Creativity where our Kiwi friends shone through, with Colenso BBDO Auckland making the enormous leap from 672nd place in 2015 to number one in 2016.
Y&R Auckland came into second place, while Australia entered the top 20 with eighth place thanks to Clemenger BBDO Melbourne, and 11th place courtesy of Leo Burnett Melbourne.
Overall, BBDO ranked globally as the Top Network, no fewer than six agencies in the world’s Top 10. In fact, in the 13 years since The Big Won rankings were first published, BBDO has topped the rankings (apart from one blip in 2013 when Ogilvy & Mather muscled in).
In the Top Media Agency stakes, Aussies scored another eighth place with UM Sydney, while NZ scooped up big time in the category of Top Agencies By Media, with FCB Auckland number one in the world for print, Y&R Auckland number one for poster/outdoor, and Colenso BBDO Auckland number one for direct. DDB Sydney scored number one spot in the world for mobile.
For the most awarded campaigns of 2016, again the Kiwis came in strong, with the gold and silver going to Y&R Auckland/David Miami’s McWhopper campaign for McDonalds NZ, and Colenso BBDO Auckland’s Brewtroleum campaign for DB Breweries NZ, respectively.
McWhopper was also the number one Direct campaign.
The Aussies managed a look in with McCann Melbourne’s Emotional Trailer for Melbourne Film Festival ranking equal 12th, and Leo Burnett Melbourne’s Reword campaign for Headspace Australia coming in at number 15.
New Zealand also nabbed a few mentions in the ‘People’ part of the directory, with Colenso’s Nick Worthington named second best chief creative officer, followed by Y&R Auckland’s Josh Moore in third.
Colenso’s Andy Blood also nabbed number one ECD, while Leo Burnett Sydney’s Vince Lagana/Grant McAloon duo snatched 11th place.
Scott Coldham, Colenso BBDO managing director said, “To be recognised as the #1 agency in the world is truly humbling and simply unbelievable. We are rapt. The global creative marketplace is increasingly filled with very interesting, talented organisations who are doing some remarkable things, moving the world forward with their innovations – redefining how brands behave.
“To be at the top of that list is incredible, and to have three kiwi agencies in the top twenty is irrefutable proof that creativity in our marketplace is in fact, the best in the world.”
Nick Garrett, CEO, Clemenger BBDO Melbourne added, “Being recognised as the eighth best agency in the world and best in Australia is brilliant validation of the progress we are making as an agency.
“Our ambition in 2016 was to be one of the best agencies in the world. The quality of our work, our integrated model and a year of aggressive growth has enabled us to do that. The exciting thing is that our best is yet to come in 2017.”
You can find the full list of global winners in all categories here.