A Birmingham businessman wants to build on the success of the media agency he launched while still at school and help to promote the city's creative industries.

John White, who with a friend set up Kiwi in 1996 when they were both 17 years old, has built the business up from creating websites to a full service creative agency.

Mr White, aged 26, is now chief executive of Kiwi in Broad Street, employing 20 full-time staff and with a client list that includes IMI, Anglo American and Barclays.

Kiwi has also recently landed a major financial services account for a European bank operating out of Frankfurt.

Mr White explained that Kiwi's aim when developing campaigns is to build powerful relationships between its clients and their audience by creating simple messages to establish straightforward communication.

Mr White puts much of Kiwi's success can also be put down to effective networking. The agency has developed strong relationships with CGI, one of the world's leading communications groups.

This relationship has lead to Kiwi successfully working on an expanding portfolio of international accounts.

The company has also linked with One M-S, Birmingham's brand research agency, which they have worked with to carry out indepth research to support their creative approach.

Mr White is keen on getting involved in the community.

He said: "In 2004 we became a Birmingham Champion, supporting Marketing Birmingham, and have recently become a gold patron of Birmingham's IKON gallery."

It's here that he also believes in getting involved with promoting the city's creative sector, as a member of the Midlands Creative Circle, and Pace, the region's publicity industry association.

"There's a massive creative buzz in Birmingham and we must promote that," he said.

"Birmingham as a creative centre is a vision which people can buy into." Mr White's Kiwi may well be a modern, young agency, but he said that Kiwi still retains some of the traditional values that many agencies have now dispensed with.

He said: "Being from an account handling background myself I appreciate the importance of having account handlers in place to liaise with clients.

"It all sounds good in theory that clients should meet direct with creatives, this is fine when the business is small with only one or two clients.

"As work builds up account handlers are essential to maintain constant contact with clients and creatives need to concentrate on being creative".

Mr White is planning more expansion.

"For 2005 we plan to expand client services further," he said.

"The Kiwi team has been strengthened by some high profile appointments.

"These include Peter Keevil as director of digital services and Terri Smart, sales and marketing director.

"The recent recruitment of specialist directors means that we will also be able to offer these services to our clients."