What an iconic year. The Queen has recently celebrated 70 years on the throne, a certain pig from M&S is soon to hit 30 and creative icon Sir Peter Blake has just turned 90. That is a pretty illustrious group, and MGA also has reason to dust off those balloons, throw up some bunting and join the celebrations – as we reach 30 years in business.

In that time our team has changed a lot. And also not that much. People have come and gone – and in some cases come back again to fit in as if they had never been away. Others have been with us for a major part of the journey and probably done every role possible. But whether they have been here decades or days, or moved on to pastures new, each one of them has made a big impact in their own unique way to help make MGA the creative powerhouse that it is. We salute you.

We have also worked with some amazing brands, and of course the wonderful people behind those companies. It has taken us up into space, deep underground, across oceans and through everything in between. There are clients that we have supported for years and years, and others that we are just starting to form a relationship with. To each and every one of you, our heartfelt thanks.

And who could forget our suppliers, partners and advisors. Our support cast that provide such a valuable contribution to all that we do. Whether it be clever technical stuff or just sound guidance during turbulent times, it makes such a difference. Cheers to you all.

So as a nod to one of Sir Peter Blake’s most iconic pieces, we have created our own photo montage featuring our very own A-listers; clients past and present, partners and suppliers, and of course our team. It represents the eclectic mix of individuals that come together to often create something truly extraordinary.

There are many stories to tell about MGA and what the business means to individuals. So we invite you to sit back, grab a coffee and, a bit like listening to that iconic album from the ‘60s, get lost in the tales from current and past MGA-ers, partners and customers alike.

What our clients – past and present – have said about MGA@30

Here at M&S we're celebrating 30 years of Percy Pig, and his tremendous career and success. I'd also like to use this opportunity to wish MGA a happy 30th birthday and congratulate them on their continued success. They have recently supported us on a major campaign on how we bring our remarkable team of colleagues together and how we really develop a sense of 2-way communications as we continue to make this a great place to work. We haven't been working with MGA for that long, but they've been a great support so far. We wish them a happy birthday as they celebrate this milestone.

MichaelM&S

When MGA first pitched to me, my biggest reservation about them was my mistrust of large, slick marketing agencies that pitch the dream and deliver anything but. After 5 years of working with them, I could not have been more wrong. They were the opposite of many of the large agencies I had worked with previously. I found them to be attentive, reliable, supportive, and not afraid to go above and beyond their brief when asked. They are creative, innovative, professional, and importantly passionate about what we do as a business. They have been instrumental in supporting my team and me in developing and establishing MTC’s brand in the UK. The team led by Andrew are friendly, honest, and hardworking. Working with an agency and group of people who share your values is extremely important to me which is why I recommend them to my peers every time. Well done on your 30th Birthday and best of luck for the next 30.

RayLong-term client

5 years ago Unilever’s Business Integrity team joined forces with MGA to do the unexpected – connect compliance with the emotion of love and encourage passionate connections with employees. Working with us, MGA helped overcome any initial scepticism held by leadership, to the point today where the word love is now synonymous to one of the most effective internal campaigns within Unilever. Envied and copied by other functions, the annual campaigns have been internally well received and gained industry wide recognition through the IoIC awards on more than one occasion. MGA inspire us, challenge us, motivate us, and continue to creatively surprise us. They are partners who have invested the time to know our business, to know us as individuals, who share the same values, who go the extra mile, whilst always being responsive, committed, and true partners in our [Protect What You Love] journey. Congratulations on a hugely successful first 30 years and all the best for the next 30 years!

SharonUnilever

With four out of six agencies in our beauty parade process ticked off with mixed results, two of which we had seen on that particularly oppressive summer’s day, we arrived at MGA’s office. The difference? Damien and Andrew walked in and spoke our language – strategic – rather than creative. Plus, they were looking to empathise rather than showcase – to understand us and why we needed an agency. What followed in the following years was a brand strategy founded on our strategic business plan and several successful marketing campaigns. What continues is an ongoing friendship.

MarkFormer client & agency advisor

Amazing people. Amazing ideas. Amazing service. As a one person internal comms team, MGA has been acting as my extended communications team over the last 8 months and I really couldn’t have done it without them! Together we have come up with a series of engaging and energetic people campaigns to take Chubb and our people through a new acquisition. Damien and the team have been hands on every step of the way. From creative campaigns and messaging to strategic advice and support. Congratulations on 30 years. Awesome work guys!

ClareChubb

Our relationship with MGA started in 2014. It had become clear that our brand and messaging didn’t reflect the vision we had for the business, so we decided to invest in a re-branding strategy. MGA stood out from the other four agencies we interviewed. We realised early on that they were the agency for us. Damien and Andrew’s preparation was impeccable, their enthusiasm and passion for what they do and how they could help create a brand that aligned with our vision was compelling. Quite simply they got us, as a business and as people, and we got them – we gelled. And what we didn’t appreciate prior to this project was how much it galvanised the whole business. MGA’s creation certainly woke up the market, it delivered the distinctiveness we wanted to achieve. Today, our brand and its strapline “Thinking Ahead” is still as relevant as the day it was produced. It has become one of the most well-known brands in the marketplace. So much so, we were acquired by a global business in 2021. Our relationship with MGA is longstanding and special.

AndySearch Acumen

Creative, strategic lovely people – that’s what I think of Damien, Oli and the MGA team after many years working together. My favourite project was the Green Shoots toolkit they devised for United Technologies Corp. It was designed to help our employees work with their local communities from Atlanta to Dubai to Sydney to raise children’s awareness of safety and sustainability. The MGA team respected our original Green Shoots campaign from Asia, adapted it for a global audience and kept the spirit of playful learning alive during the process. We also had some fun creating assets for the Chubb bi-centennial celebrations (if 30 years is great... then 200 is... amazing). Always available to be a creative sounding board or to turn on a sixpence to deliver some work, MGA is a team I truly enjoyed working with and I wish them continued success.

SuzanneFormer client

How did we first meet? Well, as sometimes happens in business, we needed a change. The agency we had then wasn’t really delivering at the pace and quality we wanted them to, and then we crossed paths with MGA. My first memories (from almost 10 years ago) are a very young team, very agile, flexible and willing to work with us to meet our challenges and deadlines. After the first successful assignment, we started working together and we haven’t looked back. We have never had the feeling that our partnership wasn’t balanced or that MGA was trying to ‘abuse’ their current provider status to increase their profits. Our relationship has always been based on common trust, understanding, good communication, flexibility and passion for aviation and what we do. Thanks MGA for partnering with us for the last 10 years and congratulations on your 30th anniversary!! To many more years of success.

MariaCAA International

When you are embarking on a business transformation, with change management issues, resetting of company-wide priorities and a repositioning in the marketplace, communication is a critical part of the overall effort. As the president of a company heading such a transformation, finding a communications agency that listened to and captured the essence of our vision was essential. MGA was that agency for us. Not only did they fully get it, their creative team was able to turn that vision into something tangible both internally and externally. From the top down, MGA is a partner that cares to fully grasp its clients’ intent, and subsequently delivers unique and tailored creative solutions. I’ve had the opportunity to work with MGA now for over a decade, and their customer-centric approach, combined with a track record of effective creativity, makes them my preferred communications partner.

LarryFormer client & agency advisor

I have now worked with MGA and its teams in various iterations for more than 15 years. In the turbulent world of marketing agencies this shows a degree of longevity which is surprising. It shouldn’t be a surprise though, because MGA – even as it has evolved – has constantly had two themes running through it which I have valued above everything: creativity and delivery. They really know their business and they get under the skin of aerospace. I'm convinced that if I cut them, they'd bleed kerosene! They knock into touch other bigger and better known agencies with their talent and skill, and it is this which has helped them achieve what they have, and be who they are today. I would like to pay tribute to Peter and Damien, and their colleagues, and wish them every success for the next 30 years. It's been great fun!

JeremyAirbus

MGA has been a trusted partner to CAAi for several years, and we've developed an excellent relationship. From day one, I've been blown away by MGA's energy and detail to continually understand our business, our market, and our customers' evolving needs. Over the years, MGA has been pivotal in elevating our global brand and maximising the performance of our channels – injecting new ideas and creative concepts to bring our messages to life, often going beyond the brief to exceed our goals. MGA is truly part of the CAAi family and a valuable asset to our marketing team. Collaborating with Damien, Andrew, Oli, and the rest of the MGA team is always a pleasure – it's great having the confidence to know our work is in safe hands with MGA onboard.

StuartCAA International

Back in 2001, despite being the number one brand in the USA for vacuum cleaners, BISSELL had come to a crossroads in the UK and Internationally. The brand was known as a sweeper brand in the Housewares Sector. Enter MGA and the team led by Peter and then Damien, whilst I restructured BISSELL UK and gained new distribution in the Electrical Appliance market. MGA was briefed to adapt the US advertising communication to the UK market, consumer sales boomed, and MGA soon became part of my BISSELL UK International management team, producing TV and press advertising, launch events and strategic direction that opened new markets in the Middle East, Russia, South Africa, and Australia. From being a sweeper brand, 8 years later BISSELL was the number 3 best-selling vacuum cleaner in the UK. Well done MGA – what a great team player!

CharlesFormer client

It’s a great pleasure to add to the celebration of MGA’s 30th anniversary, and something of a surprise as 1992 seems like yesterday to me. I can recall MGA and Peter’s team making a real contribution to the British Aerospace communication plans particularly as the Group was transforming that year. Since those days Peter has passed the reins to Damien and the relationship continued underpinned by truly well-crafted and developed thinking and a quality-of-service delivery across the many domains we discussed. I know that it’s even more exciting to look to MGA's future given this digital age where the need for great ideas and powerful communication has grown exponentially in importance and complexity. The MGA team taught me about impact and brevity so I shall close here and toast the team as it heads towards the next 30 years.

DavidFormer client at multiple organisations

I started working with MGA 30 years ago on advertising for what was then British Aerospace, now BAE Systems. And we have kept in contact over the decades and continued to work together in a variety of industries and companies – from Logistics, through Consulting, to Government Services here at Serco. We have had a lot of fun and laughter along the way, some of it in far flung places such as Santiago in Chile, where hotel rooms seemed to have been at a premium… and Peter Gibbon was struggling to find somewhere to rest his head along the way. And we have also done great, creative work that has achieved its aim, from ad campaigns to a highly successful political direct marketing campaign that helped us to win important contracts. So congratulations on your 30 years MGA, and good luck for the next 30!

CharlesClient

It’s always good to find the help and support you need, not just in terms of the specific professionalism provided but also in terms of the industry passion and knowledge that comes from the MGA team. I’ve worked with them on a number of projects in different aviation roles and I have always found them to be responsive, enthusiastic, flexible and dedicated to the job in hand. It’s rare to find advisers who share your passion for the sector you represent, but with MGA there is never any doubt that you’re all on the same team. Happy 30th!

RichardAeroTime Group

Comments on MGA@30 from our partners and former colleagues

When I started out on my independent freelancer life, MGA was one of the first agencies to commission me and I appreciated their confidence in me then, just as I do now. The feeling’s mutual!! We’ve travelled in all sorts of directions since then, as we’ve immersed ourselves in global brands, ambitious SMEs, great charities and the justice sector. All along the way having lots of laughs, swapping ideas, growing our knowledge and producing work that stands out and stacks up. Happy 30th anniversary MGA!

KitCreative associate

Pixel Fridge has been working closely with MGA over the last 3 years. We have formed a true partnership working together to fulfil our client's needs neatly complimenting each others skill sets to offer complete creative and digital solutions to clients. We have delivered multiple projects for clients around the world and enjoyed every minute of working together with the MGA team. Not only have we developed a great professional partnership, both agencies enjoy spending time together and we can only hope that the partnership strengthens over the coming years. Congratulations on such a great milestone and being successful over the last 30 years!

Pixel FridgeDigital partner

I have known and worked with MGA since my Unilever days, and it’s been nearly 8 years. We worked on many programmes together from HR leadership meetings to developing toolkits and recognition campaigns to fundraising events. Today, I have my own consulting business and choose to collaborate with MGA as my preferred creative partners. We both bring expertise that complements each other and provides holistic end-to-end communication & engagement experiences that our clients require. I have always enjoyed working with MGA, it’s like working as one team, we have the same energy, same intent and values. They are creative and fun and most of all they go the extra mile. They are partners I can trust.

NailaCommunications partner at P3 Connect

Lots of companies talk about building long-term partnerships. Few really mean it. I met and started working with the MGA team many years ago when I ran Kieon, a company that worked with agencies to outsource their website development. In common with many organisations Damien and the team were very clear that building meaningful partnerships was really important to them. And they meant it! Most of the time we did lots of great work and made clients happy together. Where their true colours shone through was during those (fortunately rare) occasions when we screwed something up and it turned out that they really did mean that they saw us as partners. When the chips were down they stood by us and helped us make things right again in the way that only real partners do. The bonds that we built run so deep that years after selling Kieon I’m still regularly in contact with Damien and the team and can’t see that ever changing!

GwilynFormer supplier & agency advisor

We first met MGA in 1996 and being a like-minded agency we soon gelled and started to produce some spectacular videos with them. At the time we were working with the wonderful Melanie Fischer from MGA who had tremendous communication and people skills and was always a pleasure to collaborate with. After a few years, I remember Melanie introducing me to the latest MGA recruit – a fresh-faced lad who was clearly not lacking in confidence and embodied the same positive characteristics as Melanie herself. Over the next few years our focus turned to international work and, regrettably, we started to lose contact with MGA. Fast-forward to 2017 and I received a call from this guy who jogged my memory as being the same fresh-faced lad: ‘what do you do now, Damien?’; ‘I’m the CEO!’. I was not at all surprised. Needless to say, we picked up where we left off and produced some great work together. Happy Birthday MGA!

PaulFilm partner at Communicator

I started my career at MGA – nowhere else has taught me as much vital stuff for a life in B2B marketing. I’ve taken the lessons I learned at MGA forward into everything else I’ve done since. Things like building truly strong client relationships, really getting inside the client’s business and knowing the product (no matter how complex) – you don’t see that very often these days. And taking real care in their craft and getting the details right – again, a rare thing in the wild.
It’s what has made their business strong for three decades. Happy 30th birthday MGA!

KatherineFormer MGA-er & client

Looking back 21 years to when I joined MGA in 2001, I must have thought it was the future – well it was according to one particular sci-fi movie. Well not according to my MGA business card which I have kept for posterity, as the agency was still using a fax machine and an ISDN line! While the technology was not modern by today’s standards, the MGA way of doing business was refreshingly modern. MGA knew back then that while the world was heading toward a digital age, business was still fundamentally a “people business” and getting to know your clients and their challenges was still of the greatest importance. Today, MGA is a modern-day creative agency however I’m reassured to see that one important thing hasn’t changed. MGA’s ability to truly understand a client’s business; in other words, “Extracting the extraordinary” which is very much part of MGA’s DNA and always has been.

JamesFormer MGA-er & client

And a few words from us

What a ride! An independent agency turning 30, especially in our industry and considering the turbulence of the last few years, is no small achievement. We have had to move with the times, weather some storms, evolve our offering and explore new opportunities. And it has been amazing to be part of that journey whilst climbing the proverbial ladder.
Over the years at MGA, I have had the great pleasure of working with literally hundreds of people – talented colleagues past and present, awesome customers across numerous industries and geographies, and best in class partners and suppliers. People that taught me the ropes. People that gave me the opportunity. People that have mentored me. People that have become friends for life. I have learnt a lot and am still learning. Warren Buffet once said that someone is sitting in the shade today because someone else planted a tree a long time ago. So I would like to thank our founder Peter and the original team back in 1992 for kicking things off all those years ago.

DamienThe MGA firefighter

I’ve only been here for 2 months yet MGA is already proving instrumental in my growth and a great influence on my creative journey. Helping develop MGA brand visuals to being hands-on across multiple client projects are both examples of the valuable opportunities I have been given to continue my learning as a designer. The MGA team has made my time and transition into agency life from university seem seamless. Their trust and confidence in my abilities has allowed me to take bigger risks and push myself. I’m so excited to be a part of MGA’s ongoing success and am looking forward to the adventures we take on in the future!

AudreyThe MGA newcomer

30 years. Makes you think about what you have done and how you got to where you are today. Way back In 1992, as MGA was just opening shop, I was still crafting my skills in Typography at the University of the Arts London right at the start of my creative journey. A creative caterpillar ready to develop into a butterfly! Fast forward and here we both are celebrating 30 years in the industry, all a bit wiser and older and I guess a perfect fit for each other. Like MGA I strive for perfection, to push creativity and most importantly to create a ‘family’ agency atmosphere. Where everyone is supported, encouraged and looked after. An agency that puts people at the heart of everything it does, a mix of people that enrich my progression as a creative. I look back and am thankful for the journey that we have both been on, and I’m truly excited about the future. A future that we can all – at MGA, our partners and clients – build together.

ColinThe MGA caterpillar

Yes, that’s me, I’m the one who started their career at MGA in 2008, to then leave and later return 13 (yes I know, 13!) years later! I am ‘The Boomerang Employee’. I have fond memories of my first stint at MGA; the clients; agency ethos; payday drinks (although these were more frequent than payday!); and Ed Pollard, the bouncer (or some would say the Rottweiler) of the creative department. If your brief wasn’t written properly on a Creative Request form, then you weren’t stepping one foot inside his department! Second time around, I’m met with some new faces and some familiar ones too! I like to think I add a little something different to the mix. As the observant empath in the team: I’m the first one to put my hand up to help others; I try to check in on everyone; and I like to share my knowledge on colour therapy in the morning workload meetings – you wear what you feel! It’s great to be back in the MGA fold. Here’s to another 30 years of MGA continuing to be in business, which I hope I’m very much a part of.

Sarah-JaneThe MGA Boomerang

MGA incorporated 30 years ago in 1992 and the current accounts department has been a fixed asset (not yet fully depreciated) for over 83% of the time. We have completed over 360 payrolls and month ends and we have reconciled 120 VAT returns. One of us was around when we were at 2 Vincent Street, and we’ve overseen 6 transfers to deposit us at 30 Maltings Place. Over 100 people joined MGA over the years, some of whom have stayed for many (fiscal) years, some for just a quarter or two and we added SGA to our number in 2008. We have had some profits and the occasional loss, but the Accounts Department has always been in perfect Balance (sheet). Here’s to another 1,560 weeks.

Paul & LisaThe MGA NumeRATS

1992 seems a long time ago now. I was 44 years of age and after 26 years with my previous company, I had a chance to set up MGA along with a colleague of mine. We swapped offices from a uniformed concierge 5 story building, and being part of a large group, to camping out with an old flying friend of mine in an office that just about fitted a desk and a filing cabinet. We’d always had a passion for all things aerospace, and we were fortunate enough to get a chance to successfully pitch for exactly that kind of work. The accounts in the aerospace sector that we gradually built on became the bedrock of the business and this enabled us to expand into other sectors. We are fortunate in that some of those same clients are still with us all these years on – so we must be doing something right!

PeterThe MGA architect

Having obtained my master’s degree in the midst of the 2008 financial crisis, I was having a hard time finding a job out of Uni — especially as all my work experience was in France (which didn’t seem to make much of an impression at the London interviews I got). On a break from my hospitality job, I came across an open position for an account executive role at MGA. I decided to jump on the opportunity and went for my first interview at the Tufton Street office with Damien and Andrew. Unfortunately that position had just been filled, but there was another position open as part-account executive, part-front of house. Whilst not ideal, I attended the interview, was then offered a second-round interview with the wider MGA and SGA teams at that time, where I had a really good feeling. I decided at that moment to jump onboard. The whole team really made me feel at ease from day one. Cut to three months later, and I was already promoted to full-time account executive. A few more opportunities came my way, which, after 12 years in the business, now make me the Head of Client Services today! I will always be grateful to the MGA leadership for putting their trust in a young Frenchman back in 2010, and continuing to do so all these years later.

OliThe MGA climber

Reaching our 30th anniversary is a real reason to celebrate. Having been part of the agency for more than half of this time, for me it’s definitely become more than a job, and to some degree a career – it’s become something that is very personal.
Key to this has always been the relationships built – those with our clients, our partners and the team here, this is what keeps me going. The sharing of goals and successes, the occasional late night to get things over the line and being there for each other, have built the agency into what it is today.
It also really helps that we get to work in some amazing industries, on some ground breaking projects, developing creative solutions which engage and excite people on a daily basis. We look forward to continuing this with everyone we know and the few we don’t’ (yet) in the coming years.
Personally, I’d like to thank all who have made this possible… and, as always, I look forward to celebrating this with you all this year too!

AndrewThe MGA optimist

MGA@30 stats

120
employees over the years
6
office moves
360
monthly payrolls run

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