Year In Review: July – Kevin Roberts’ gender diversity gaffe; More Lions scam; Nine hires McCabe for digital gig

2016 was another year of major change and transformation in the media and marketing world. Mumbrella provides a month-by-month recap of the most read and biggest stories that affected the industry.

It was far from a slow start to the month of July, with Ikea announcing it would part with Match Media after 13 years.ikea-logo-with-white-space

The furniture giant said it would conduct a local review of two global holding companies, GroupM and Dentsu Aegis, in what was one of the biggest market shake-ups in the market.

Ex-Australian Women’s Weekly editor, Helen McCabe resurfaced after six months, with Nine announcing her new role as head of lifestyle at nine.com.au.


The appointment was part of Nine’s focus on improving its online offering.

Early on in the month, Woolworths launched its first brand work from M&C Saatchi, featuring a young couple cooking a Sunday Roast to a version of Etta James’ ‘Sunday Kind of Love’.

It was a difficult month for Telstra, which was forced to pull a guerrilla ad promoting the Channel Seven Olympics app from TV screens.

Telstra relaunched the ad with disclaimers stating it was not associated with the games however The Australian Olympic Committee still launched Federal Court action for the ad, arguing the telco was trying to “deceive Australians.”olympics on 7 app

Arnott’s and Streets also went to Federal Court in July, over the ice-cream brand using Arnott’s products to promote its Blue Ribbon brand.

It was better news in the agency world, with entertainment media agency M announcing it would expand into the creative space.

The agency, which had worked with artists including AC/DC, Coldplay, Beyonce and Madonna said the move was to get big brands more engaged with the music industry.

Towards the end of the month, Ikon Communications found itself grappled in a lawsuit with its client, Advangen for allegedly engaging in “misleading and dishonest conduct”.


July could also be remembered for new campaigns such as Hungry Jack’s anti-seagull packaging by Clemenger BBDO and David Jones’ Spring Summer campaign launch, which featured a new brand tagline ‘One name: endless possibilities.’

In the final days of July, Ogilvy APAC, became the third agency to hand back a Cannes Lion for scam.

The agency network admitted it had exaggerated claims in a case study video for a charity that worked to limit importation of Rhino horns.

The month was polished off by the suspension of Kevin Roberts, global boss of Saatchi & Saatchi for his claim there was no problem with gender diversity in adland because women were happier in non-executive roles.

Photographer Kate Ayrton | Source saatchikevin.com

Photographer Kate Ayrton | Source saatchikevin.com


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