2017 was an interesting year. The South African economy grew by only 2.0% in the third quarter of 2017, down from a revised 2.8% in the second quarter. South Africa businesses are carrying more debt, up 5.9% in 2016 as compared to 2015. Inflation is higher than South Africa’s inflation target of 3-6% that is used for monetary policy. The profit margin ratio for the formal business sector declined from a peak of 11 cents for every rand of turnover in the third quarter of 2007 to 5 cents in the first quarter of 2017. The South African economy moved into recession with the reported decrease of 0,7% in GDP during the first quarter of 2017. And the list goes on.
But clearly there are clients in the market and these clients have budgets. They may be reduced but they still have spending power. And these clients are looking for an excellent creative product but above all, they are looking for personal, transparent and efficient service and they are looking for agencies who can help their rands go further. They are also looking for agencies who are committed to empowerment within the growth of South Africa. Our Level 2 BBBEE illustrates this commitment.
With this in mind, Hitchcock Michalski approached 2017 with a positive self-image and mindset. A determination to understand the client’s needs and over deliver. 4 of our top Nigerian clients continued to support us and lead to our referral to a Rwandan client that we are currently delivering a project for, everything from brand strategy to brand identity to designing their signage and fuel forecourts.
4 new South African clients joined our stable, two in particular, exhibiting a strong cultural fit, mutual respect and consistent support. We are proud of striking visual languages crafted, intelligent and detailed Style Guides produced, elegant brochureware and packaging designed and produced, iconic signage and fuel forecourts conceptualised, produced in South Africa and shipped to Nigeria, authoritative exhibition stands conceived, powerful poster art, effective communication campaigns and superb website design and build.
2017, being our third year of business, we were delighted to win a silver Loerie, to be ranked as the 9th Communication Design company in South Africa and to come second in an international design competition, competing against top European design companies and judged by some iconic designers of our time.
Thank you 2017, appreciation and respect to our clients and recognition to our hard working and loyal staff.