Chicago's O'Keefe Reinhard & Paul Wins Top Honor At 2015 Ad Age Small Agency Awards

Two Two-Year-Old Shops Take Home Top Honors: Chicago-based O'Keefe, Reinhard & Paul was named 2015 Agency of the Year. Nomades, a shop based in Mexico City and Buenos Aires, nabbed the gold for Integrated Campaign of the Year.

Jul 31, 2015, 07:59 ET from Advertising Age

BOSTON, July 31, 2015 /PRNewswire/ -- Chicago's O'Keefe Reinhard & Paul (OKRP) last night was named Small Agency of the Year at the 2015 Ad Age Small Agency Awards, the premier honors saluting outstanding independent shops with 150 or fewer employees.

The Small Agency Awards were launched seven years ago by Ad Age, the leading global source of news, intelligence, and conversation for the marketing and media community, to ensure that the innovative campaigns and brand ideas generated by smaller companies receive the recognition they deserve.

The complete list of winning agencies -- which were honored at a ceremony in Boston last night attended by more than 300 industry executives who attended the Small Agency Conference -- can be found below. Profiles of all the winning agencies will be showcased in the August 3 edition of Ad Age.

During its short existence, OKRP has brought in big-name clients like Yum Brands, for which the shop has worked on some of its emerging concepts like Chick-fil-A competitor Super Chix and Vietnamese-sandwich concept Banh Shop. But it's probably best known for last year's holiday campaign for Big Lots. The campaign featured a '60s-style-girl-group singing songs including "Nailing This" and "Black Fridayest Black Friday of All" and was meant to bring some feistiness to the brand that consumers would remember, particularly because the retail chain does not have a big budget.

"This year was the toughest year we've had in terms of judging," said Ad Age Editor Ken Wheaton. "We seem to get more entries and stiffer competition each year. This year we saw a noted uptick in international shops, particularly from Latin America. But wherever they're, located, small and independent shops are obviously capturing the eyes of major marketers -- while continuing to do work for smaller businesses as well."

Nomades' work on "Soccer Gentlemen" for Tecate--the Integrated Campaign of the Year-- came about because the agency and brand were faced with the challenge of tapping into World Cup fever without mentioning the tournament or the Mexican national team, both of which were sponsored by rival Corona. So the campaign thought of a way to teach men how to juggle their love lives and watching soccer nonstop by being perfect gentlemen.

Gravity Road, an agency in London won International Small Agency of the Year. 

The complete list of winners across the competition's 16 categories is:

Gold: O'Keefe Reinhard & Paul, Chicago
Silver: Wongdoody, Seattle and Los Angeles

1-10 Employees
Gold: Division of Labor, Sausalito, Calif.
Silver: Battery, Los Angeles

11-75 Employees
Gold: Noble People (Formerly Ikon3), New York
Silver: A2G, Los Angeles

76-150 Employees
Gold: Red Tettemer O'Connell & Partners, Philadelphia
Silver: The Tombras Group, Knoxville, Tenn.


Gold (tie): The Terri and Sandy Solution, New York
Gold (tie): Sylvain Labs, New York
Silver: The Magnetic Collaborative, New York

Gold: Hiebing, Madison, Wisc.
Silver: Little, Minneapolis

Gold: Dalton Agency, Jacksonville, Fla.
Silver: The Variable, Winston-Salem, N.C.

Gold: McKee Wallwork + Co., Albuquerque, N.M.
Silver: PMG Worldwide, Fort Worth, Texas

Gold: Greenlight Media, West Hollywood, Calif.
Silver: Camp + King, San Francisco

Gold: Pollinate, Portland, Ore.
Silver: Nemo Design, Portland, Ore.

Gold: Gravity Road, London
Silver: Don, Buenos Aires, Argentina

Gold: "Soccer Gentlemen" for Tecate, Nomades, Mexico City and Buenos Aires
Silver (tie): "Madden NFL 15" for EA Sports, Heat, San Francisco
Silver (tie): "The Volkswagen of Your Life" for Volkswagen, Arrechedera Claverol, Mexico City

Gold: "Awkward Family Viewing" for HBO Go, SS+K, New York
Silver: "Madden NFL 15" for EA Sports, Heat, San Francisco

Gold: "The Drop a Brick Project," BarrettSF, San Francisco
Silver: "Sem Dono Beer" for Adote um Focinho and Bamberg Brewing Senores, Sao Paulo, Brazil

Gold: "Senseless Robot" for International Paper, McKee Wallwork + Co., Albuquerque, N.M.
Silver: "The Coffee Connection" for Singapore Economic Development Board, Secret Little Agency, Singapore

Gold: Elite SEM, New York
Silver: Bohan Advertising, Nashville, Tenn.

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SOURCE Advertising Age