Four top talents of DDB Singapore, one of the top advertising and communication agencies in the world, have decided to move on and start a new venture, BLK J, an independent creative agency with the focus to create great advertising across as many media as needed with the least number of buzzwords. The four founding partners of BLK J, Rowena Bhagchandani (Managing Director), Joji Jacob (Group Executive Creative Director), Khalid Osman and Lester Lee (Creative Directors) have been working together for about ten years at DDB. Their partnership helped the agency to win multiple new businesses as well as making it one of the most awarded agencies in the world.
Explaining about the idea that led them to start such a venture, Mr. Jacob says,
“A couple of years ago we started noticing that the marketplace was changing rapidly and with it the needs of our clients were also evolving. In a big agency like DDB, radical change was slow. So we thought why not come together and start an agency that would be nimble and smart enough to help our clients navigate those changes successfully. We have proven skills as storytellers in both traditional and new media. Now our clients will have access to these very skills and simplified processes that save time, money and headache.”
As part of the creative renaissance at DDB Singapore, the foursome has won a record tally of 24 Cannes Lions in the last 7 years, including 10 Lions for StarHub. Their winning partnership has created works like Home by Homes, 4G4Good and Majulah Moms for StarHub, which helped the latter win the prestigious IAS Hall Of Fame Brand of the Year Award three times.
Expressing his support to BLK J, David Tang, CEO – DDB Group Singapore & Asia said,
“This is DDB at its very best in creativity and humanity. We believe in a collaborative world where we must encourage and support our very own talent to grow and thrive, even to give them the wings to soar. We wish BLK J the strength and stamina to stay adventurous and stay dedicated.”
Despite being a new company, the expertise of its founders have already made them busy scheduling meetings with some of the biggest and best brands, and the agency is on its way to give a tough competition to even the best in the world. Rowena Bhagchandani, MD of BLK J, who is aware of the market competition says that none of them have allowed their experience to overpower them and that they consider this only as a beginning and are raring to work hard.
“We hope to be known as an honest, humane and hardworking agency. We want to build some of the world’s best brands and work with some of the best people in the process. We aspire to be known as an agency that can help its clients to react faster to the changes in the marketplace and consumer behaviour,” she added.
BLK J also has plans to include India in their list of countries that can be benefited by a company like theirs and Mr. Jacob, having worked in India, knows the market and the consumers quite well. They have also had inquiries from some great brands from India. He says that he owes India a huge debt for the success that he has had in his career and catering to the customers in India is definitely in the company’s agenda. Between the four founders, they have proven capabilities of telling stories that create conversations and conversions and are also hoping to bring the craft and magic of storytelling that they have evolved in Singapore to India.
Working in partnership with DDB Worldwide, BLK J will continue to serve the multi award-winning account, StarHub, and take to other high-profile creative accounts as well.
Main photograph by BLK J