Web incubator seeks agencies for start-ups

Internet start-up incubator Gorilla Park is drawing up a roster of advertising agencies for its clients, which are expected to spend up to &£10m on advertising.

The company, which last month attracted &£13m of backing from Cable & Wireless, has already shortlisted 20 agencies across all marketing services disciplines, through the Advertising Agency Roster (AAR).

It aims to reduce the list down to “four or five” roster agencies, which will be recommended to “baby gorillas”, the start-up ventures it has selected for development.

Gorilla Park was set up last year by Net guru Jerome Mol to offer seed capital and business advice to new media start-ups. Its backers include investment banks Goldman Sachs, Deutsche Bank and ABN Amro.

UK marketing director Claire Harrold says: “We are trying to make the process of selecting an ad agency as easy as possible for the ‘baby gorillas’. The 20 or so agencies on the shortlist range from small specialist operations through to large worldwide networks. Our clients will not be contractually obliged to use the agencies on the roster, but we will be recommending they do.”

The roster will initially apply to the UK, but may be broadened to cover Gorilla Park’s European operations. The company hopes to have signed up at least 25 start-ups by the end of the year.

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