Last night saw Singapore’s top independent advertising, design, interactive and branding agencies come together to form the Independent Agency Network (IAN) and will launch a ‘Made In Singapore’ initiative for local businesses next year.
This collective, comprising the biggest names in the local communications scene, has been established to give independent agencies a voice, while providing a single point of contact for clients looking for alternatives to the MNCs.
“The independent agency scene in Singapore is growing rapidly. Coming together to form IAN gives us a greater presence, while ensuring clients know that there is one single entity they can reach out to for communications and branding help. With the launch of IAN, we intend to provide an alternative to the bigger agency groups out there. One that’s collaborative, nimble and just as creative,” says Alvin Wong of the Alchemy Partnership.
“IAN gives us an opportunity to draw on each other’s special talents in the same way a large network draws on talent from its offices,” explains Gary Tranter, Executive Creative Director of Arcade. “It makes independent agencies more competitive and it levels the playing field.”
“Clients can readily access the smartest minds in the business,” says Anand Vathiyar of Up&Up. “With IAN, they can work with local agencies committed to helping other local businesses succeed with ideas that truly deliver.”
As an inaugural initiative, IAN has plans to launch ‘Made in Singapore’ in the first half of 2014. ‘Made In Singapore’ will provide local brands with the opportunity to get branding and communication advice to help them succeed in the global marketplace.
“There have been many great products born and bred in Singapore. You just have to look back to Sim Wong Hoo and the Soundblaster at Creative Technologies. The Trek thumb-drive is another. And in the fashion category, Charles & Keith are flying the Singapore flag. What we want to do is give new brands the benefit of our time and thinking to help them get ahead on the global stage. We’ll be making an announcement about ‘Made In Singapore’ in the coming months, so watch this space!” says Charlie Blower, Managing Partner of Blak Labs.
Ian Batey, Founder of local hot shop Batey Ads and creator of the iconic Singapore Girl, was in town to grace the launch of IAN. “Local brands have never been in a better position to take on the world,” says Batey (left). “They can acquire a competitive advantage by harnessing the creative prowess of IAN – something that was never available.”
Apart from business, IAN is also dedicated to nurturing the next generation of agency talent, with potential tie-ups with local institutions to provide teaching support, training and internships. IAN started as a social gathering for like-minded independent agencies. The group celebrates its independence with quarterly get-togethers and networking events.
Founding agency members include the Alchemy Partnership, Arcade, Blak Labs, BS Advertising, Convertium, FlabSlab, Kult, Up&Up and Wild Advertising & Marketing. Parties interested in collaboration are encouraged to contact the Founding Agencies or visit www.ian.sg for details.