By: Marketing Magazine

UM Malaysia has been declared the world’s most competitive media agency, according to RECMA’s recently published global rankings. This has been one stellar month for the agency as just a few weeks back Prashant Kumar, CEO of UM Malaysia and President World Markets Asia-Pacific, IPG Mediabrands was honoured with the prestigious Malaysian Media Conference (MMC) Person of The Year 2014 Award.

RECMA is a leading global research company that monitors performance of media agencies in 45 countries. Its Network Diagnostics report is a periodic qualitative evaluation of some 900 agencies in these countries.

According to the research company’s global diagnostic report published in August, UM Malaysia and ZenithOptimedia France jointly claimed the top spot with 26 points each. In the November edition of the report, UM Malaysia edged past its top rival to become the world’s top-ranked agency by gaining one more qualitative point to bring its final tally to 27 – the highest qualitative score ever received by an agency network in RECMA’s evaluations.

UM Malaysia’s growth has been phenomenal since it started its operations in 2008. Led by Prashant, the agency has grown from a 28-person outfit to a 240-person full-service marketing agency, and has the rare honour of becoming five-time ‘Agency of the Year’ winner at Malaysian Media Awards. The agency has said it draws more than 50 percent of its revenues from a range of diversified services offerings including its social media arm Rally, e-commerce specialisation Ingenuity, marketing consultancy Inventure and data management platform Sixth Sense.

On this recent win, Prashant remarked, “RECMA has over the years become the most comprehensive and rigorous barometer of quality and consistency, immensely trusted by clients and competitors alike. We are honoured to earn this recognition for our team in Malaysia. It inspires us to continue carving out an agency of the future”.

According to the detailed results, UM Malaysia was the only agency that maintained a “Dominant” profile across 17 out of 18 criteria in four key categories of the qualitative evaluation: compitches, momentum, resources and client profile. Only 25 agencies out of the 900 evaluated were given out the “Dominant” profile. Comprising the top 5 agencies globally, MediaCom Germany with 25 points, MEC Germany and MEC UK with 23 points followed closely behind the two leading agencies.

In Asia Pacific, Carat China was the runner-up with 22 points, followed by Carat Hong Kong and Maxus India with 21 points each. Mindshare China, ZenithOptimedia China, OMD Australia and Starcom MediaVest Philippines were tied at 20 points, and also comprised the “Dominant” agency list in the region.

UM Malaysia handles some of the most prized local and global accounts such as Johnson & Johnson, Hershey’s, Telekom Malaysia, KFC, Pizza Hut and Sony Pictures, among others.