AKQA is a creative agency specializing in interactive marketing. This means: interactive experiences and customer relationship management; e-commerce and technology services; media, search and analytics; interface design; and content creation and distribution. They have also helped create “fully integrated and experiential” campaigns.
The privately held company is based in London, San Francisco, New York, Washington D.C, Amsterdam, Berlin and Shanghai and has 800 full-time employees.
Headquarters: 5th floor, 360 Third St, San Francisco, California, United States
1 St John’s Lane, London, EC1M 4BL, United Kingdom
Tel: +44 (0)20 7780 4786
Fax: +44 (0)20 7780 4787
Awards and recognition
In recent years, AKQA’s work has been increasingly lauded. Between 2005 and 2010, AKQA garnered more than 100 industry awards, including at least one agency of the year award every year. In 2010, AKQA took home Agency of the Year for the second year running at the Revolution Awards  and Agency of the Year awards from New Media Age and the Interactive Advertising Bureau. In 2009, the company won five separate agency of the year awards, a feat unprecedented in the communications industry.
AKQA had previously been named Revolution’s Agency of the Decade (for 1997 to 2007).
When Advertising Age’s Creativity magazine created its inaugural Interactive Agency of the Year award (2006), it gave it to AKQA, recognizing the agency’s “global culture, creative hires and technological muscle.” Said the magazine’s editor, Teressa Iezzi, “We thought AKQA embodied the spirit of the big-idea-first approach.”
Wired (UK edition) ranked AKQA’s founder and chairman 34th in the magazine’s “first annual survey of Britain’s top digital power-brokers.”
In 2006, in collaboration with the Cannes Lions International Advertising Festival, AKQA launched the Future Lions awards for university-aged students of all disciplines (“You could be majoring in Advanced Plumbing or Paper Science for all we care, as long as you have great ideas and are hungry for innovation” explains the rules for the 2010 contest).
The annual competition challenges students to “advertise a product from a global brand in a way that couldn’t be conceived five years ago. This is an opportunity to shatter conventional thinking and leave us with tingly chills down our spines.”
The 2009 Future Lions winners hailed from all over the world: Berghs School of Communication (Sweden), Westerdals School of Communication (Norway), the Royal Melbourne Institute of Technology (Australia), Nanyang Academy of Fine Arts (Singapore) and the School of Visual Arts (New York). Past Future Lions winners have gone on to work for notable agencies like Crispin Porter + Bogusky and Saatchi and Saatchi.
Volkswagen 2010 GTI car launch; the first car launch in history to be done without any paid media, and the first to happen in Apple’s iTunes Store. Based on an engine by Melbourne developer Firemint, AKQA created the free “Real Racing GTI” games app (released on October 15, 2009). It became the #1 app in 36 countries, with over 4.3 million downloads. Users could find nearby dealers using the GPS function, and within days of the app’s release dealers were reporting sales directly linked to the game.
Fiat eco:Drive; If you own a new Fiat 500 (or one of a few other models), an AKQA-devised setup called eco:Drive collects your real-world driving data on a USB stick you plug into the dashboard. When you plug that stick into your computer, a proprietary algorithm analyses your gear changes, acceleration and braking habits and calculates your eco:Index – a scoring of your carbon footprint. It then offers advice to improve your driving style and quantifies how much good you’ll do for the environment, and how much money you’ll save in the course of a year, with the increased fuel economy you’ll achieve by adopting the program’s suggestions.