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About us

Finding a better way

Welcome to PHD – we’re a global communications planning and media buying agency network delivering smart strategic thinking and creative innovation for the world’s leading brands.

Brilliant media thinking is in our DNA. A culture of thought-leadership, creativity and innovation has seen us grow from a challenger agency in the UK, to a global leader with over 4,000 employees in over 80 countries.

We combine the latest industry insight with the best creative minds to produce planning innovation and create award-winning work for some of the world’s largest advertisers.

Finding a better way is our ethos and sums up how we approach everything – from a new client brief to the way we work.

Part of a powerful family

World-class purchasing power to meet the tough buying demands of the world’s biggest advertisers.

Being part of Omnicom Media Group (OMG) gives us world-class purchasing power to meet the tough buying demands of the world’s biggest advertisers.  Having access to sophisticated research resources and advanced business intelligence tools through the group allows us to deliver the very best strategic expertise.

This combination of buying clout and superior communications planning credentials means we offer clients a real alternative.

Our clients

The network of choice for the world’s leading brands

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“The clarity of thought that goes into their comms planning is second to none.”

Geoff Seeley, Global Communications Planning Director, Unilever

“PHD has the capability and global footprint to help us drive greater efficiencies and reduce complexity.”

SC Johnson

“PHD is a highly capable and innovative agency that clearly understands our brand and demonstrated really strong strategic and connection planning capability.”

Virgin Atlantic
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Our People

Our Story

PHD was founded in London in 1990 by David Pattison, Nick Horswell and Jonathan Durden; the ‘P’, the ‘H’ and the ‘D’.

Back then the industry was all about buying; as cheaply and as quickly as possible. But David, Nick and Jonathan believed that consumer insight and media behaviour was just as important. They saw a future where smart thinking and clever planning could help brands influence consumer behaviour more than ever before.

PHD, or Pattison-Horswell-Durden as it was known back then, became the agency that ‘thought before it bought’ and was quickly credited with inventing creative media.

In 2002 PHD – now part of Omnicom – opened its first offices outside of the UK and began to grow the international network.

The formation of PHD’s parent company, Omnicom Media Group, in 2005 meant that PHD’s buying was now powered by one of the world’s largest media holding companies. Clients could now benefit from PHD’s unique approach to media planning, without compromising on the buying.

The founding principles of thought-leadership, creativity and innovation have remained at the heart of the network and today PHD is a global network of 80+ offices still leading the way in the evolution of communications planning around the world.

Read more about our heritage at www.phdat25.com

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