VIDEO: Lowe's Tony Wright shares a global perspective

In an exclusive interview with Campaign Asia Pacific, Lowe & Partners Worldwide chairman Tony Wright explains why demographics are destiny, and the importance of the everyday luxury effect in a recession.

wide player in 16:9 format. Used on article page for Campaign.

With a number of high profile awards this year, Lowe and Partners appears to be making its creative mark in Asia-Pacific. Wins at Cannes, One Show and Spikes for Lowe in Singapore, Vietnam and Indonesia are part of an ongoing strategy to raise the agency’s profile.

“Historically we’ve always had a strong network in Asia, we’re one of the oldest and most established in the region,” says global chairman Tony Wright. But he concedes that, up until a couple of years ago, the network has tended to be quite quiet and inward-focussed.

“We took the decision that in order to compete in the war for talent, we needed to be more externally-focused,” he says, adding that this strategy is just starting to come to fruition. “We’re seeing some positive results, I don’t want to overstate it, there’s still a long way to go. We need to see three or four years of this kind of progress before I would declare victory.”

Wright goes on to say that he’s extremely glad that the network decided to maintain strength in markets likes Vietnam, Thailand and Indonesia, rather than centralising in Singapore. “Clients have said, ‘Manage (our account) from Singapore, but we want the work done out there in the real world.”

Asked for his global perspective on the economy, Wright says he’s never in his career seen a larger contrast between the sense of optimism that still exists, for good reason, here in Asia, with the atmosphere in North America and Western Europe.

“Demographics are destiny… in many categories in which we work there are many tens of millions of consumers having access to these products for the first time, so for us, this still looks like a place with optimism and growth – and we don’t see that changing.”

Asked whether he thinks this growth only applies to fast-moving consumer goods, Wright says telecommunications is another sector with huge potential for growth. “That is a category which consumers see as one of their most important brand choices.” He also points to the rise in popularity of premium segments of everyday products.

“In a world where people are worried about making choices on big-ticket items… there’s an ‘everyday luxury effect’ to a premium food brand or premium personal care product. The difference is that those products have to offer genuine added value.”

Campaign Asia

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