Garage 366: the “Why Not” Thinking and “Can Do” Attitude
Posted on February 08, 2016 | By Fayza Bjayou

Dubai-based Garage 366 is a new integrated agency with a unique client servicing and digital angle. The proclaimed medium-sized agency, blends innovative design, craftsmanship and technological acumen to create impactful emotional experiences. ArabAd met with Managing Director and Founder Ahmad Sabra, an industry professional with over 15 years of advertising experience, to find out more about the young agency and the reasons behind its increasing power and influence within the local market.

The words “Why Not,” which serve as the corporate motto - emblazoned at the entrance of the agency - alludes to the positive and negative connotations of the market and echoes the individualistic nature of creativity and contrasting viewpoints. Sabra explains, “We realise that creativity is subjective and the motto therefore represents the philosophy behind this very notion. The question “why not?” denotes positivity and empowerment at the very heart of what we do, compelling us to drive our business forward with a “can do” attitude.”

The company’s integral philosophy and passion for creativity, is reflected in every detail of the agency workspace. “The box” (conference room) and animated graffiti art on the walls convey the agency’s resourcefulness and creative flow. “Regardless of the client budget,” Sabra says, “every booking is a deal. Our scope of creativity and skills is fully utilised and never determined, shaped or restricted by the amount of money agreed upon.” 

Sabra was determined to keep the corporate name despite a flurry of confusion related to the identity of the business. “Yes, some thought I was opening up a garage, literally! But for me, the concept of a garage and my agency has relative similarities. We are a place for alternative solutions with a priority to the client and the quality of work delivered. The agency name therefore defines the integrated services we represent,” he explains. The name and the dedication to client servicing is something that Sabra believes sets them apart from other agencies adding, “Human interaction and the inspiring, cordial relationships between team members and clients, is fundamental to the agency’s success.”

Sabra further highlights that “unforgettable human experiences in advertising can only ever be achieved when prioritising each and every working relationship.” He believes that the agency’s partnership assures a commitment, which goes beyond client expectations: “Our agency has edge over others because we treat everyone as partners, demonstrating an equal measure of respect, shared passion and transparency.”

The “366” within the agency name conveys the resonant corporate promise to achieve a unique and memorable partnership; one that supersedes the conventional 365 day calendar, to that of a unique leap year of 366 days. “We work to create a lasting brand identity that will shape our clients’ present and future.” 

Sabra believes the agency’s growth is owed to his dynamic team and their astute knowledge in integrated solutions. “Our team is our biggest asset. We are all here because we carry an innate passion for what we do and this propels our motivation to achieve new heights of success.” 

Their biggest clients to-date include, Under Armour, a prominent American sports apparel and accessories company and Gulf Marketing Group, the mother group of over thirty brands in the region including, Sun & Sand Sports, the largest sports retailer in the Middle East. “Such clients have invested a profound trust in us and our delivery,” he notes.

He goes on to discuss the digital space and mentions a growing fear within the market, particularly when responding to, adapting and executing strategy relevant to the dynamic nature of the change. Sabra affirms that, now is the time to embrace and empower one’s skills in digital: “We demonstrate a very strong commitment to utilising the tools available both offline and online. The digital platform is becoming one of the biggest challenges in the market; it has become an integral aspect of our work, to demonstrate sound knowledge and competency.” He asserts that while most agencies have a department dedicated to the digital space, “every team member at Garage 366 lives and breathes digital, and the team is constantly learning so that we optimise the use of digital to enhance our performance for our clients and their consumers.”

Sabra stresses that the market is short of companies that have a local understanding of international capabilities and resources stating, “We aim to bridge that gap in areas where larger agencies are unable to provide this service. We engage well with local suppliers and these sustained working relationships assure our exceptional reputation in the market.” 

Sabra looks forward to a year of sturdy growth and progression. “We strive for acknowledgment and to receive accolades that we are deserving of.  We plan to nurture and sustain our working partnerships to guarantee long-term collaboration and further diversification of our offerings in media production and creative development. We wish to expand our operation and further utilise talents across the market.”
He concludes that the client network at the agency will carry on growing as long as there is continuity and dedication to the human element of the work process…“a mutual respect and trust that reflect confidence in our capabilities as an agency.”