Section image

Penny Machines

Cherries
oil on canvas
22 x 20 in
1981

Penny Machines
oil on canvas
23¾ x 29¾ in
1961

Stack of Books
oil on canvas
30 x 24 in
n.d.

Seven Suckers
oil on canvas
19 x 23 in
1970

Twin Jackpots
oil on canvas
30 x 46 in
1962

Ties
oil on canvas
20 x 26 in
1980

Cake Slices
oil on canvas
20 x 16 in
n.d.

Bates 141

Report by Jeffrey Yu (below)
Chairman

Jeffrey Yu

For the last three years at Bates 141, we have marshalled our philosophy and operations around understanding, harnessing and creating ‘Change’ for our clients across Asia. While 2009 was a challenging year, it was this singular focus that kept us strong commercially and attitudinally and saw us grow across nearly all dimensions. 2009 was our greatest year yet of delivering change for our clients.

We helped Chengdu City rebuild its image as China’s most ‘liveable city’ after the devastating earthquake that hit Sichuan province in 2008. The campaign won Gold at the China Effies. We partnered with Shanghai General Motors for the 12th consecutive year, helping grow Buick to be the top-selling brand for GM.

We helped Virgin Mobile establish the first true youth brand in India and, in the process, won many awards including Silver at the Asian Marketing Effectiveness Awards and the India Effies, as well as Bronze at the prestigious global Jay Chiat awards.

In Singapore, we created a social marketing campaign for the National Council against Problem Gambling, ‘Know the Line’, targeting social gamblers who cross the line into habit.

In Taiwan, we were ranked No.1 by Campaign Brief and seven people in our creative department made the top talent list, led by our Taiwan ECD Richard Yu. We were also the most-awarded agency in Greater China, according to the 16th Chinese Times Advertising Awards.

To complement our work and growth, we kept thought leadership on the top of the agenda. Our A-Z Dictionary of Change picked up the Grand Prix at WPP’s Atticus Awards. Our ‘ChangeBites’ fueled many new client solutions with specific discovery work for key markets and categories. Our blog, Changing Asias, has also been ranked in the top 25 by Advertising Age China.

2009 was a terrific year for new business. Much of this came from our existing clients, including Sony, HSBC, Rémy Martin and Philip Morris. New clients included Heineken in Hong Kong, Pizza Hut, Singapore Expo, Sina, F&N, Nissan, LiNing, Vitalon, TVS Motors and Dabur.

We added new creative talent including Kenny Choo, a multi-award winner and China expert. We appointed technology experts Soonkeat Loo and Kyle Ho and, on the business side, we appointed Barry Leung as regional director to build a strong, customized integrated agency offering and grow the activation business across China. In Indonesia, we welcomed CEO Shubo Sarkar.

To generate value for our clients in times of recession and change, we enhanced our proprietary ChangeDay workshops and conducted ChangeDays for HSBC, Avon, Darbur, Max Bupa, Bank of Communications, Sina, F&N, Dell, PCCC and SGM.

We launched 141 Design, a specialist unit based in Kolkata working on a range of clients including Coca-Cola, Dabur and Fortune. We also expanded our digital network, 141 Digital, to five hubs across Asia.

We expanded our footprint, opening an office in Dhaka, Bangladesh. This is a very exciting and untapped market of 160 million consumers and, together with 141 Sercon, we extended our services to some of our clients who have entered the market including Marico, Coca-Cola, Nokia and Sun Microsystems.

We continued our momentum on corporate and social responsibility. Our ChangeRally initiative helped our people to deliver change for special causes in Asia and can help clients see the bigger picture of giving back to society.

With funds donated by employees of Bates 141 and Ogilvy China, we rebuilt the Hong Qi Cun Red Flag Elementary School, which had been devastated by the Sichuan earthquake. When The Philippines was struck by a series of typhoons and storms that killed more than 250 people and displaced thousands more, all our offices stepped up to help the charities we are aligned with. In Cambodia, we worked with a group of children at the Sunrise Orphanage to create a film to explain the plight of Cambodian families.

It is good to see that this energy and action throughout 2009 is being noticed across the marketplace. We recently scored a seven (out of 10) in the industry- and client-recognized Media Asia Agency Rankings Report for 2009. We took joint second place out of the WPP advertising agencies and were sixth overall for all agencies in the Asia region. All this great work by our people helps position us for an even stronger 2010.

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