From humble origins, James co-founded ATTIK, a creative agency, now part of the giant Japanese advertising global network – Dentsu Inc.
James and his partner launched their business in 1986 after leaving Batley School of Art, with the support a £2,000 from The Prince’s Trust, after the high street banks said “no”. The two of them worked out of a make-shift studio in James’ Grandma’s attic bedroom in Huddersfield.
ATTIK was amongst the first to use Apple and bought their first ‘Mac’ in 1986 from the relatively new computer firm. In the 90’s ATTIK opened offices in London, New York and Sydney as the company expanded from graphic design, to broadcast, film and branding.
Since then James has led many global brand design projects for Coca-Cola, Adidas, Camel, Virgin Atlantic, Jack Daniels and Baileys and has spoken at design/branding events with audiences of up 1300 people in London, New York, San Francisco, Oslo, Toronto, Amsterdam, Moscow, Paris and even to an audience at Buckingham Palace (including HRH The Prince of Wales). He’s also been personally recognised by The Queen for “The Best of British Design” and raised money on ITV’s ‘Who Want To Be A Millionaire’ for The Prince’s Trust.
“It’s been a tough few years for everyone. I have always said though we individually have to address the situation ourselves. Since we cannot rely on governments or banks, we have to connect, and have conversations that in-turn can help our business. _The Yorkshire Mafia is a perfect framework for businesses across the region to do that. In networking terms, they have quickly established it’s brand as the premier organisation in the Yorkshire region. They provide an opportunity to gather and share ideas, intelligence and most of all be open about the challenges and problems all businesses face at all stages of the business life. We are a country of ideas, creativity and design. We can mix intelligence or science with art and creativity. In my 25 years of self employment The Yorkshire Mafia is a perfect catalyst to enable us to share ideas and fuel growth.”
James Sommerville, co-Founder of Attik