The Prolific North Top 50 PR Agencies 2016

David Prior's picture
by David Prior

ProlificTop50pragenciesfinalWelcome to the 2016 edition of the Prolific North Top 50 PR Agencies, the definitive list of the North’s leading PR agencies.

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This initiative is published in association with our partners, Pitch Consultants, and follows our other ground-breaking research features, which include the Top 50 Digital Agencies, the Top 50 Integrated Agencies and the Top 100 Brands.

Mustard Research, one of the UK’s leading independent research companies, has rigorously managed the data-gathering process throughout.

The ranking is anchored on financial information taken from Companies House, as well as financial reporting company fame BVD, and also draws upon data submitted and verified by the agencies themselves including additional financials, headcount, client information and – where appropriate - confidential private background information.

We started with an initial longlist of over 200 PR agencies to be based in or have offices in the North, and we then drilled down in more depth on the accounts of around 120 agencies.

NMA PitchThese were ultimately whittled down to the 50 in the ranking below.

Citypress ahead

For the second successive year, Manchester agency Citypress takes the number one spot, pipping Tangerine once again.

Mancunian agencies do in fact fill the top four spots, with Havas PR UK a significant riser at number three with Weber Shandwick in at four.

For the first time since we started compiling this annual ranking in 2013, Finn takes the honours on the other side of the Pennines, coming in at number five but the first Yorkshire agency on the list. Other Leeds-based agencies Beattie and Lucre have also found spots in the top 10.

Overall, there were almost twice as many agencies on the list with a Manchester base than a Leeds base, 20 against 9, although 16 agencies do have a base somewhere in Yorkshire. Liverpool was represented by four agencies, three of whom were listed in the top 15.

We did not give agencies the option of being included or not. This does mean however that sometimes larger, or indeed, smaller agencies, can have unusual years which can inflate or hurt their performance in a given year.

And once again, integrated or digital agencies with significant PR operations such as Amaze and McCann’s have not been included because this ranking is dictated by the agencies’ prime offering: PR and comms.

Finally, many thanks to all the agencies who have so helpfully supplied us with information and data, as well as responding to our questions where required.

The Prolific North Top 50 PR Agencies 2016

in association with Pitch Consultants

Position 2016 Company name Location Head count Agency’s selection of clients
1 Citypress Manchester 70 Aldi, Coca Cola Enterprises, Lloyds Banking Group, Swinton Insurance, British Gas
2 Tangerine PR Manchester 60 Peugeot UK, Pizza Hut, Sport Relief, Jewson, British Gypsum
3 Havas PR UK Manchester 26 Kellogg's, ASDA, Pets At Home, Greggs, Mecca Bingo
4 Weber Shandwick Manchester 32 Alliance MBS, PZ Cussons, Sealed Air, Aldi, Avis
5 Finn Communications Leeds 26 R&R Ice Cream, Cadbury’s ice creams, Yoomoo, ghd, Quorn, Morphy Richards, Taylors of Harrogate
6 Barrett Dixon Bell Altrincham 30 DSM, tna, Tata, Tyco, M&I Materials
7 Brazen PR Manchester 30 Wilko, Dr Oetker, Magnet, Merlin Entertainments, Molson Coors (Rekorderlig)
8 Beattie Communications Group Leeds, Manchester 22 Specsavers, Commercial Estates Group, Biffa, Flybe, La Redoute
9 Lucre Leeds 20 Kodak,, WVR, Holiday Extras, Kohler Mira
10 Influential PR Liverpool 21 Quilter Cheviot Asset Management, Morgan Sindall, Camelot UK Lotteries Limited, Liverpool Vision, International Festival of Business 2016, Grosvenor Liverpool Fund (Liverpool One)
11 Corporate Culture Liverpool 23 The Co-op, FCC, Carlsberg, WRAP, WWF
12 Carousel PR Manchester 18 Selfridges, MGA, Savills, Festival Number 6, Snowbombing
13 Peppermint Soda Manchester 25 Home Bargains, Story Homes, Muse Developments, Farjo Hair Institute, James Cropper Plc
14 Mason Williams Manchester 12 Accor, TOMY, Fruit Heroes, Holland’s, Athenaeum
15 Kenyon Fraser Liverpool 37 Merseytravel, M&S, Bradford College, Aintree, Liverpool JMU
16 Scott Partnership Holmes Chapel 13 Agilent Technologies, Crown BioScience, Sciformix, Allscripts Healthcare, Precision Polymer Engineering (Idex)
17 Smoking Gun Manchester 18 Silentnight Group, Bright HR (Peninsula Business Services), Robert McBride, Nobia UK (Magnet Kitchens), Holt LLoyd International
18 Democracy Manchester 18 Travis Perkins, CORGI HomePlan, Knowsley Safari, Halewood Wines & Spirits, TJ Hughes
19 MCG PR Leeds 14 Vileda, Pink Lady, Tenderstem, Damart, TaxAssist Accountants, Costcutter Supermarkets Group
20 SKV PR Manchester 14 Crown Commercial Services framework, Qualtrex, Lancashire Enterprise Partnership, BDP, Lowry Hotel
21 PR Agency One Manchester 16 Gift Voucher Shop , Fletchers Solicitors, PushDoctor, YMCA, Appliances Direct
22 Intelligent Conversation Manchester 11 Synectics plc, EMIS Group plc, United Utilities plc, Pharmacy2U, Brother Europe
23 DTW Guisborough 13 The Law Society, Mersey Gateway Project, New Wear Crossing Project, Solicitor’s Regulation Authority, Working Links
24 Hatch Communications Leeds 14 Crabbie's Alcoholic Ginger Beer, First Utility, NHS, Wensleydale Creamery, World Vision
25 Pelican Communications Oldham 13 Apeal, NCC, FCC Environment, Markem Imaje and BFFF
26 Context Public Relations Macclesfield 11 Check Point Software Technologies, Simoco Group, UserZoom, Algosec, Maginus Software Solutions
27 iseepr Otley 11 GlobalPlatform, SIMalliance, EMVCo, NG Bailey IT Services
28 Roland Dransfield PR Manchester 12 Hill Dickinson, Nuffield Health, Schroders, Bilfinger GVA, Royal London Asset Management
29 HR Media Sheffield 13 Westfield Health, Stagecoach, B Braun, SIV, Redbrik Estate Agents
30 Hattrick PR Manchester 10 Desso, PetSafe, Tarkett, Stirling Lloyd, REPIC
31 Label PR Manchester 12 Mark Hill Hair (Boots UK), Fragrance Direct, Swimwear365 (FGH-UK), Curvissa (FGH-UK), Transform Cosmetic Surgery
32 Acceleris Harrogate 11 Utilita Energy Ltd, Royal Alfred Seafarers, NFFO Ltd, Nexus Vehicle Management Ltd, Meridian Motor Group Ltd ( Vantage)
33 Plinkfizz Newcastle-under-Lyme 10 The Trentham Estate, Waterworld, City Learning Trust, Peveril Homes, Bowcock & Pursaill Solicitors
34 RMS PR, Design & Marketing Altrincham 16 Warburtons, Swizzels, Hiscox, Character World, Jerrold Holdings
35 Active Profile Manchester and Liverpool 10 Energy Innovation Centre, Riello UPS, Pozzoni Architecture, Liverpool BID Company, Muse Developments
36 The Write Angle Chorley 9 Festive Lights, Sika Liquid Plastics, Preston’s College, Champion Accountants, Eric Wright Group
37 de Winter PR & Marketing Chester 12 Bank of America, Chester Grosvenor Shopping Centre, Aaron & Partners, Royal Crown Derby, Nuffield Health
38 Ramarketing & PR Newcastle upon Tyne 8 Juniper Pharma Services (JPS), Vaulkhard, Onyx, Crafter’s Companion
39 Social Communications Sale 12 Places for People Group, Lidl, United Living, Extra MSA Motorway Services, Devonshires
40 Prohibition PR Leeds 8 Interflora, Savills, Silentnight Group, Thomson Reuters
41 JAMpr Manchester 8 Argos for Business, Carl Kammerling International, Tuxedo Money Solutions, Money Advice Group, JST Jodie
42 Aberfield Communications Leeds 8 Qhotels, Deloitte, First Direct, Northern Rail, NG Bailey
43 The Partners Group York 7 Glassolutions, Eggborough Power Station, Nuffield Health,  National Farm Attractions Network (NFAN), Dynamic Networks
44 Manc Frank Manchester 7 Carole Nash, Icelolly, Lucozade, Ribena, Weetabix
45 Dragonfly Public Relations Rotherham n/a NHS, Marshalls, Pland
46 Allott & Associates Knaresborough 9 PHS Group, Ulma Packaging, Confederation of Paper Industries, Pickersgill-Kaye, Potter Logistics
47 MTJ Associates Leyland 6 AG Barr, Burton’s Biscuits, Grace Foods; Kepak Convenience Foods; Sutcliffe Play
48 Umpf Leeds 7 LivingSocial, Park Inn by Radisson, Virgin Trains East Coast, Visit Malta, YESSS Electrical
49 Brand8 PR Leeds 6 Avant Homes, Gordons, Sanderson Weatherall, Lansinoh, TOMRA
50 The Karol Marketing Group Newcastle upon Tyne 7 AMG Group, High Street Group, NAL Asset Management, Master Locksmiths Association