Q3/Q4 performance: TRO's financial performance in the third quarter has exceeded projections made at the start of 2009. "It will continue to improve through to the end of the year," says managing director Keith O'Loughlin. "The fourth quarter will be active so we're expecting reasonable earnings and a consolidation of profitability for the full year." The agency's turnover was £19.4m in 2008 and O'Loughlin anticipates 2009 figures will be up by 10%.
Staffing: "We run the company in a dynamic way and move staff between teams due to client needs, and that will continue next year," he says. "I have sufficient confidence in 2010 to increase our headcount by ten to 16 employees."
Recent wins and highlights: Successfully converting pitches into definite business and winning awards including Campaign of the Decade for its work with Mini, and Brand Experience Agency of the Year at the Field Marketing and Brand Experience Awards, are highlights. The agency also won business with the Department of Health and the BBC.
Business plans for 2010: TRO will bolster its digital, animation and production teams with new staff. It's considering creating a presence in Eastern Europe and South America via its sister companies' offices, and plans to target the FMCG and consumer durables industries while continuing to work with automotive clients.
Industry outlook: "The economy has turned a corner and there's a great deal of talent in the industry, so the outlook is positive for 2010," says O'Loughlin. "But I think we have a collective responsibility to do a fantastic job for our clients as we build the reputation of experiential alongside traditional media." He anticipates that client budgets will increase marginally and perception issues will ease but companies will strive to spend budgets responsibly.