Ikon wins ad industry test case with former client ordered to pay $939,000

Ikon Communications has won its legal battle against a former client, which claimed the agency had overseen a “complete flop” of a marketing campaign.

In a ruling handed down at Sydney Supreme Court this morning, Justice Ball ordered hair treatment brand Advangen to pay Ikon $939,055 plus interest.

The cross-claim against Ikon was dismissed.

Ikon, which is owned by WPP AUNZ, launched legal action claiming Advangen had refused to pay invoices following a 2015 marketing campaign for hair thinning product Evolis.

Advangen, owned by ASX-listed Cellmid, launched a counter claim alleging Ikon was to blame for a massive sales shortfall amid a TVC with misguided creative.

It blamed the agency for cobbling together a sub-standard campaign,  including TV spots it claimed were more in keeping with a production of Gone With The Wind than a promotion for a hair thinning remedy.

The legal battle was regarded as a case understood to be without precedent in Australian legal history.

Ikon said it was extremely pleased the Supreme Court has ruled in its favour.

The agency’s CEO Lesley Edwards said it had been a particularly challenging time for the agency and its staff. She added she was exceptionally proud of her team and how they had managed themselves throughout the court proceedings.

“As an agency we pride ourselves in forming mutually respectful relationships with our clients,” Edwards said. “We are pleased that this matter has been resolved appropriately. We will continue doing what we do best – producing best-in-class work for our clients.”

She added: “As an industry, this was widely regarded as a test case that could have had implications on how agency-client relationships work moving forward. We are heartened that the courts recognized the thorough case Ikon presented.”

Partner of DVM Law Stephen von Muenster said: “Ikon was entirely successful and should be congratulated on fighting a difficult case. We now need to sit down and read the judgement and, importantly, understand the lessons learned for the media and advertising industry.”


Get the latest media and marketing industry news (and views) direct to your inbox.

Sign up to the free Mumbrella newsletter now.



Sign up to our free daily update to get the latest in media and marketing.