Ogilvy & Mather

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Ogilvy & Mather
Industry Advertising, Marketing, Public Relations
Founded New York, New York (1948)
Founder David Ogilvy
Headquarters 636 Eleventh Avenue (Manhattan),
New York, New York, 10036, USA
Key people
Miles Young, Worldwide Chairman and Chief Executive Officer
Tham Khai Meng, Worldwide Chief Creative Officer
Subsidiaries Ogilvy & Mather Advertising
Ogilvy CommonHealth
Ogilvy Public Relations
Geometry Global
Website www.ogilvy.com

Ogilvy & Mather is one of the largest marketing communications companies in the world. It was named the Cannes Lions Network of the Year for three consecutive years, 2012, 2013, and 2014; and the EFFIEs World's Most Effective Agency Network for two consecutive years 2012 and 2013. The company is composed of industry leading units in the following disciplines: advertising; public relations and public affairs; branding and identity; shopper and retail marketing; health care communications; direct, digital, promotion and relationship marketing; consulting, research and analytics; branded content and entertainment; and specialist communications. O&M services Fortune Global 500 companies as well as local businesses through its network of more than 500 offices in 126 countries. It is a WPP company (NASDAQ: WPPGY).


Ogilvy & Mather was founded in 1948 by British born David Ogilvy, with backing by a previous employer, the London advertising agency Mather & Crowther.[1]

Mather & Crowther originally sent David Ogilvy to the United States in 1938. Over the next ten years, Ogilvy worked in research at the Gallup polling company, worked for British Intelligence during World War II, then spent a few years farming in Pennsylvania. Ogilvy in 1948 started a U.S. agency with the backing of Mather & Crowther, who by then had merged with the U.K. based Benson agency group. Ogilvy opened his U.S. shop as "Hewitt, Ogilvy, Benson, & Mather" in Manhattan with a staff of two and no clients.[citation needed][2]

Ogilvy was acquired by the WPP Group in 1989 for $864 million.[3]

Public relations[edit]

Subsidiary, Ogilvy Public Relations Worldwide (OPR) is a global public relations agency with specialties in consumer marketing, corporate, healthcare, technology, social Marketing, public affairs and 360 degree digital influence. OPR operates 69 offices in locations throughout the world. Headquartered in New York, it has a total of nine offices in North America, along with 22 offices in Europe, five in South Asia, ten in East Asia, five in the Middle East and Africa, two in Central Asia, three in Latin America, six in Southeast Asia, and seven in Australia.[4]

Ogilvy Public Relations has its own wholly owned subsidiaries:

  • Mind Resource: Acquired in 2011 Hong Kong-based healthcare communications firm Mind Resource Healthcare Consulting Limited. Founded in 2007, Mind Resource is a leading firm in the highly specialized field of healthcare communications which includes disease awareness, patient education, and medical education. Mind Resource currently represents some of the top multinational pharmaceutical companies, medical associations, medical service providers and professionals.[5]
  • Feinstein Kean Healthcare: Established in 1987, Feinstein Kean Healthcare serves clients spanning healthcare -- from biomedical research and government institutions, to diagnostic, device and pharmaceutical markets, to industry, professional and patient groups, to healthcare services, informatics and care providers. The firm employs a variety of specialists, including business and brand strategists, marketers, policy and advocacy experts, digital and social media influencers, science writers and editors, communication planners and creative professionals. FKH offers clients a range of services including organizational strategy and planning, brand development, advocacy relations, professional and patient engagement, social and digital media strategy, content and execution, integrated product launch support, marketing, public and media relations, website and multimedia development and production, and global communications in a rapidly changing healthcare environment. [6]

Government lobbying[edit]

In 2005, Ogilvy PR acquired all-Republican lobbying firm The Federalist Group LLC.[7][8] The company subsequently became bipartisan,[9] and its name was changed to Ogilvy Government Relations.[10] OGR operates from the same building as the office of its parent company in Washington, DC.[11][12] In 2010 Ogilvy Government Relations became a wholly owned subsidiary of Ogilvy & Mather. OGR had a total lobbying income of over $21 million in 2009.[13] This makes OGR the 7th largest lobbying firm in the United States.[14] OGR was named a Top 10 financial services lobbying firm in the 2010 regulatory reform debate.[15] Its top clients included the Blackstone Group, Highstar Capital, the Poker Players Alliance, Chevron Corporation, and Verizon Communications.[16] OGR employees and lobbyists donated over $230,000 to Republican and Democratic Party primary candidates, politicians and PACs during the 2008 election cycle.[13] OGR Chairman, Wayne Berman, was featured on Washingtonian magazine's 2007 list of the top 50 lobbyists in Washington, DC.[17]


The OgilvyCulture division was formed in late 2010 and early 2011 to market products across different cultures.[18] Social@Ogilvy and Ogilvy Youth divisions were started in 2012 to provide social media and youth marketing services, respectively.[19]

Subsidiary Ogilvy Public Relations (OPR) is a global public relations agency with its own wholly owned subsidiaries:

  • Mind Resource: Acquired in 2011 Hong Kong-based healthcare communications firm Mind Resource Healthcare Consulting Limited. Founded in 2007, Mind Resource is a healthcare communications firm.[citation needed]
  • Feinstein Kean Healthcare: Established in 1987, Feinstein Kean Healthcare

A former subsidiary, Dudley-Anderson-Yutzy, was acquired by the company in 1983 and folded into the OPR practice in 1988.

Notable campaigns[edit]

The 2013 Google India advertisement (created by Ogilvy & Mather India) Reunion (about the Partition of India) has had a strong impact in both India and Pakistan, leading to hope for the easing of travel restrictions between the two countries.[20][21][22] It went viral[23][24] and was viewed more than 1.6 million times before officially debuting on television on November 15, 2013.[25]


Ogilvy caused some controversy in 2004 when a reportedly discarded video advertisement for the Ford SportKa hatchback began spreading virally via email. The 40-second video, which shows a lifelike computer-generated cat being decapitated by the car's sunroof was apparently rejected by Ford, but still made its way onto the internet, sparking outrage among bloggers and animal rights groups.[26][27]

In 2005, Shona Seifert and Thomas Early, two former directors of Ogilvy & Mather, were convicted of one count of conspiring to defraud the government and nine counts of filing false claims for Ogilvy over-billing advertising work done for the U.S. Office of National Drug Control Policy account. In an e-mail, Seifert stated "I'll wring the money out of [the ONDCP], I promise". Seifert and Early were sentenced to 18 and 14 months in prison, respectively. Seifert also was ordered to pay a $125,000 fine, in addition to writing a "code of ethics" for the ad industry as part of 400 hours of community service. Ogilvy & Mather repaid $1.8 million to the government to settle a civil suit based on the same billing issues and continues to produce anti-drug spots for the government.[28][29][30][31][32][33]

The company was involved with a controversy in May 2009 when a Clio Award was given to a campaign for the A & E History Channel. One of the associated images compared the American deaths at Pearl Harbor with the Japanese deaths after the bombing of Hiroshima.[34]

In September 2010, an Ogilvy & Mather radio ad for ARCO, a U.S.-based oil and gasoline company, caused a controversy when the advertisement which used a sped-up version of the Emergency Alert System (EAS) header tones caused EAS decoders at radio stations across the country to activate, causing a false emergency message to be sent out to monitoring television and radio stations as well as local cable systems which had their programming locked out and replaced with the primary EAS station's emergency message, which, in this case, ended up being the ARCO ad. The situation came to a head when one radio station reported that its EAS decode activated at least 5 times during the week because of the ARCO ad. The Society of Broadcast Engineers issued an alert bulletin to all broadcasters warning them about the ad.[35]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ Ad Age.com 30 April 2013 "Who was Mather ? Meet the lesser-known men behind famous agency names"
  2. ^ Hays, Constance L. (1999-07-22). "David Ogilvy, 88, Father of Soft Sell In Advertising, Dies". The New York Times. Retrieved 2010-05-20. 
  3. ^ Rothenberg, Randall (16 May 1989). "WPP's Bid Is Accepted By Ogilvy". The New York Times. p. 1. 
  4. ^ "Ogilvy Public Relations Worldwide Company Preview". Retrieved 2010-09-12. 
  5. ^ "WPP Company Profile". Retrieved 2011-12-13. 
  6. ^ "Feinstein Kean Healthcare (FKH) Company Profile". Retrieved 2010-09-12. 
  7. ^ "Ogilvy Public Relations Worldwide acquires the Federalist Group, LLC". 13 September 2005. Retrieved 2010-09-12. 
  8. ^ Brush, Silla; Snyder, Jim (20 January 2010), "Republican lobbyists prep for GOP gains", The Hill, retrieved 2010-09-12 
  9. ^ O'Connor, Patrick (31 January 2007), "Democratic Congressman Tries to Force Firing of GOP Lobbyists", Politico, retrieved 2010-09-12 
  10. ^ "Company History - Ogilvy Public Relations Worldwide". Retrieved 2010-09-12. 
  11. ^ "Contact Us - Ogilvy Government Relations". Retrieved 2010-09-12. 
  12. ^ "Office Locations - Ogilvy Public Relations Worldwide". Retrieved 2010-09-12. 
  13. ^ a b "Lobbying Spending Database - Ogilvy Government Relations, 2009". Center for Responsive Politics. Retrieved 2010-09-12. 
  14. ^ "Lobbying Spending Database". Center for Responsive Politics. Retrieved 2010-09-12. 
  15. ^ http://www.politico.com/news/stories/0610/38231.html
  16. ^ "Lobbying Spending Database - Ogilvy Government Relations, 2009". Center for Responsive Politics. Retrieved 2010-09-12. 
  17. ^ Eisler, Kim (1 June 2007), "Hired Guns: The City's 50 Top Lobbyists", The Washingtonian, retrieved 2010-09-12 
  18. ^ Elliott, Stuart (July 17, 2011). "Mosaic Marketing Takes a Fresh Look at Changing Society". New York Times. Retrieved November 15, 2013. 
  19. ^ Elliott, Stuart (February 13, 2013). "Ogilvy & Mather Staffs up in Social Media and Youth Marketing". New York Times. Retrieved November 15, 2013. 
  20. ^ Naqvi, Sibtain (2013-11-19). "Google can envision Pakistan-India harmony in less than 4 minutes…can we?". The Express Tribune. 
  21. ^ PTI (2013-11-15). "Google reunion ad reignites hope for easier Indo-Pak visas". Deccan Chronicle. 
  22. ^ Chatterjee, Rhitu (2013-11-20). "This ad from Google India brought me to tears". Public Radio International,. 
  23. ^ Peter, Sunny (2013-11-15). "Google Search: Reunion Video Touches Emotions in India, Pakistan; Goes Viral [Watch VIDEO]". International Business Times. 
  24. ^ "Google's India-Pak reunion ad strikes emotional chord". Times of India. 2013-11-14. 
  25. ^ Johnson, Kay (2013-11-15). "Google ad an unlikely hit in both India, Pakistan by referring to traumatic 1947 partition". ABC News/Associated Press. 
  26. ^ Morford, Mark (2010-09-02). "Very Funny Cat Decapitations / Is it OK to laugh when small European cars maim cute fuzzy animals? A perspective check". The San Francisco Chronicle. 
  27. ^ The Washington Post http://www.washingtonpost.com/ac2/wp-dyn/A16073-2004Apr15?language=printer. Retrieved 2010-05-20.  Missing or empty |title= (help)
  28. ^ http://adage.com/article/news/shona-seifert-sentenced-18-months-prison/46288/
  29. ^ http://adage.com/article/news/thomas-early-sentenced-14-months-prison/46276/
  30. ^ http://www.nytimes.com/2005/02/23/business/media/23adco.html?_r=0
  31. ^ http://www.justice.gov/usao/nys/pressreleases/July05/ogilvymathersentencingpr.pdf
  32. ^ http://www.wsj.com/articles/SB107341899075739300
  33. ^ http://www.campaignlive.co.uk/news/463584/
  34. ^ http://www.redstate.com/absentee/files/2009/05/historyjapan-1.jpg
  35. ^ ARCO Commercial Trips EAS Units (Updated September 10, 2010) (Society of Broadcast Engineers Website)

External links[edit]