THE BOOK OF LISTS: The 10 Most contentious pitches
campaignlive.co.uk, Monday, 17 December 2001 12:00PM
1. Ken Livingstone's Transport for London
The body's decision to appoint M&C Saatchi to its congestion charges
account before its shortlisted agencies pitched caused such a furore
that TfL reversed its decision, reopened the pitch and asked the
departing marketer, Charlie Edelman, to delay her departure and step in
to run a proper pitch.
This company's marketing director, Nick Cross, should watch his back.
After five years with HHCL & Partners and assurances that there would be
no review, HHCL was informed of Cross' decision to move the account to
Mother while he was away on holiday.
3. The Daily Express
It split its £20 million media account between three agencies in a
move which observers interpreted as a means for agencies to shoe-horn
their clients' ads into Daily Express titles. True or not, the pitch
decision was altered in May, when CIA was taken off the roster and its
business split between OMD and MediaCom.
The sportswear company spent three months trying to pick an agency to
handle creative work on its £15 million pan-European account
before choosing to keep its advertising in-house. Miles Calcraft
Briginshaw Duffy, one of those that missed out, called on the IPA and
ISBA to stop such non-events happening again.
5. The AA
This pitch has been on "go slow" for several months now. One person at
one of the numerous long-listed agencies called the pitch "a triumph of
process over substance".
The upmarket clothes brand conducted a six-week pitch for an agency to
handle its £1.8 million UK creative assignment. M&C Saatchi and
Miles Calcraft Briginshaw Duffy were shortlisted. Then Richmont,
Hackett's Swiss owner, called the whole thing off.
7. British Tourist Authority
This pitch kept changing shape. A review was called in light of the
foot-and-mouth crisis, which got under way and included an international
brief. Then it was decided that international was not the way forward
and the pitch went quiet. A fresh pitch was called later through COI
The bank's decision to move from Leagas Delaney to BBH without a pitch
sparked cries of "cronyism" from observers and "smart new-business
tenacity" from others. The marketing director, Simon Gulliford, had
worked with BBH on the Heat launch.
9. Burger King
It remained with Lowe Lintas but not before it had asked three agencies
to pitch for its whopping £10 million account.
The water filter company spent four months on a pitch before opting to
stay with Da Costa & Co and the irritating wife who bleats "It's MY cup
of tea". A manager at one of the agencies condemned it as "the biggest
ever waste of my time".
This article was first published on campaignlive.co.uk
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