Turkish ad agency loses client after copying Audi’s advert

One of Turkey’s leading advertising agencies found itself in hot water when its new campaign for a client closely resembled a car commercial by German car manufacturer Audi.

The television commercial for mobile technology and gaming firm Peak Games first aired on Feb 18., broadcast simultaneously on 41 Turkish TV channels. Initially the 3-minute clip seems to be about insurance as a man is filmed driving a car in Istanbul facing unexpected obstacles, before the ad is ‘hacked’ and the screen transforms into a digital recruitment campaign for the Turkish tech giant.

Medina Turgul DDB’s commercial for Peak Games

Praise for Medina Turgul DDB, the creative agency behind the commercial, quickly turned sour as people discovered it bore an uncanny resemblance to an advert by Audi, which ran in Sweden in 2011. Even the music used in the Turkish commercial is the same as Audi’s “Safety Code” ad.

The social media backlash prompted client Peak Games to not only drop the new ad campaign, but to also sever its ties with Medina Turgul, which is part of the DDB global network of ad agencies.

The Peak Games advert bore an uncanny resemblance to a commercial Audi ran in 2011

The gaming specialist issued the following statement:

“We have learned with everyone else that our ad was not original. It is impossible to describe our pain and sorrow. It is important for us to have originality in creative works, so we halt all our ads.” 

The company is reportedly also planning to sue Medina Turgul and its US parent company DDB.

Peak Games has carved out a 300 million global customer base for its games played on mobile devices. The software developer is behind popular games such as Toy Blast, Gin Rummy Plus, and Turkish favourite Okey Plus. In 2017, one of its mobile card games was sold to California-based game developer Zynga for $100 million, helping to fund the expansion of the Istanbul-based business.