Adelaide Art & Design Club slams decision by SA Tourism to hand account to TBWA\Melbourne

Thumbnail image for Barossa2.jpgTBWA\Melbourne has controversially won the South Australian Tourism Commission creative account, taking the business from long-term local incumbent KWP!

The win has caused a storm in the SA ad industry, prompting the Adelaide Art & Design Club to email its members the following:

    The decision by the state government to award the multi-million dollar advertising account for the South Australian Tourism Commission to an interstate company is an absolute disgrace.

    More alarmingly, this is just the tip of the iceberg.
In its entirety, the SA government is the largest advertising client in the state. If taxpayers' money continues to be sent east, it will adversely impact hundreds, if not thousands of livelihoods and supercharge the brain-drain.

    A yet to be named Melbourne agency was handed the jewel in the crown of South Australian government advertising accounts.

    You might remember how a local Adelaide advertising agency had the eyes of the world turned toward South Australia with globally lauded campaigns like Barossa. Be consumed. In their infinite wisdom, it appears the SATC has concluded only an interstate agency is now capable of such a feat. This of course, is utter nonsense. There are several highly capable, local companies that could have, and should have, been considered for such a lucrative account.

    It will be argued the successful agency will now open a local office, but renting office space and dropping a couple of people in it is little more than smoke than mirrors. The reality is, all the strategic and creative work will be done interstate and that's where the profits will go. Local companies have been invited to tender for the 'scraps from the Melbourne table', under the direction of the interstate agency.

    Aside from the advertising agency personnel directly affected, the domino effect will be felt by many in the creative services industry the AADC represents. Graphic designers, artists, photographers, videographers, editors, audio engineers, film crews, producers and actors are an example of just how many local jobs will be under threat, while Melbourne bank accounts are swollen by the tax dollars collected from these threatened workers, and every South Australian.

    Adding insult to injury, if losing the revenue and creative opportunity isn't enough, we've now become the laughing stock of the Australian advertising industry.

    The AADC, on behalf of its members, sponsors and the broader creative community it represents, will continue to fight this injustice and lobby for measures to be put in place to protect local jobs and stem the brain-drain.

    You can help, by sharing this release with colleagues and friends, by writing in protest to your local MP and encouraging your colleagues to do the same.

    And, if like us, you believe we need to grow and develop our industries instead of decimating them, become a member, committee member or sponsor to help your Club help you. The bigger our membership base, the louder our voice.

    Yours Sincerely,

    The AADC.
    Your club. Your voice.


Relax said:

Good lord, the money stays in Australia and you'll probably get some great work from that agency. Stop bitching about something so insignificant.

@relax said:

Are we also going to talk about how Tourism Australia took their recent campaign to Droga 5 NY, and only approached NY agencies? No government money stayed in Australia for that.

Tess said:

They have already had some great work-from people who live there.

Relax said:

We could talk about that but that's a different situation. There the money does leave the country. Soon we will be upset when the client doesn't award the work to an agency in their suburb.

35 said:

Well done, TBWA. You won out after SATC invited 35 agencies to tender. 35 FFS!

Hypocrites said:

Can't see how SATC's next domestic campaign could possibly convince South Australians to spend their tourism dollar locally.

Fair go... said:

The industry in Adelaide is entitled to feel threatened, hard-done-by and rejected. They did good work, they did it on the smell of an olive-oily rag. It worked.
And then, they got boned. Like the meat hanging in the ad above.
By their own government.
It's pretty easy to sit in an office in Cremorne, or with the sounds of the harbour lapping at your window and propose the Adelaide industry simply 'sucks it up'.
Adelaide has lost so much business, and I don't mean just advertising.
This was probably inevitable, but that doesn't make it right.
Nor is it right to ask 35 friggin' agencies to tender.
That's the real story here...why couldn't the SATC hacks compile a shortlist? It's also pretty obvious that 35 agencies would be desperate to have a crack based on the quality of work done previously. Kudos to KWP.

Business is Business. said:

Dry your eyes, children of Adelaide.
Seriously. You could fill a barrel with these sour grapes.

One door closes, another one opens.. said:

Well done KWP! on a long & successful tenure with SATC.

As an ex-Adelaide folk who now works with a large multi-national in the Eastern States, this honestly hurts.

The real opportunity now is to show Australia's Advertising fraternity what you're truely capable of. This is disappointing, but it's business.

Good Luck KWP!

Weapons Inspector said:

Adelaide agencies, KWP included, will just have to think laterally. Perhaps a move into the submarine-building & defence material industry.

Sad said:

I’m not fiercely defending that it shouldn’t move interstate but for the advertising, film, photography and design industry in Adelaide it frustratingly feels like the final nail in the coffin. It’s sad but most of the good talent here has left in the last 5 years, there’s now no network agencies, no clients (let alone innovative ones) wanting to do interesting work, no money for craft and no jobs. The knock on effect for the whole creative community is huge (no shoots mean film & photography people out of work for example) and to be honest it feels like a slap in the face from the government to then not only invite 35 agencies to pitch (I thought the SA art gallery’s 11 was bad!) but then take the work, money and jobs and go interstate. It’s just sad to watch a creative industry shrivel up and die.

Dissapointing said:

As somebody who grew up in Adelaide and had a long successful career in design and advertising I had to make the tough call to leave. There is simply a lack of support being given to the industry by the government and the successful businesses there.(believe it or not there are some big name businesses who have come from Adelaide)

Many of the best talent have long since left, not because they wanted to, but in order to make a fair living we had no choice. I made the decision to work in Asia where I rapidly doubled or tripled the pay rate, one cannot blame the talent for making this decision. The blame must rest with the government and big name businesses who have failed over many years to support what was a strong progressive industry of talented people. KWP! won worldwide accolades for the work they did, it wasn't always to my taste but the results spoke for themselves. Tourism has boomed proving the ROI on this spend. What more must the local industry do?

ricky rubio said:

Terrible decision. TBWA\Melbourne is an agency on it's knees, begging for mercy.

If you're going to cross the border, at least choose someone on the up.

Mother said:

I call 'Karma' here.

yeet said:


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