Outdoor shops line up as TfL re-tenders LU's ad concession

The London Underground advertising concession is being re-tendered by Transport for London as part of a review of its advertising sites that could see sales centralised into one outdoor contractor.

The ten-year LU contract is currently held by Viacom Outdoor and expires in 2006. However, the contract for the TfL-owned part of London bus shelters has also expired, allowing TfL to review all of its outdoor third-party ad sales contracts. Adshel holds the bus shelter concession.

The review is being overseen by TfL's group marketing director, Chris Townsend, who wants to increase the amount of ad revenue that it gets from its outdoor estate. The review could extend to Docklands Light Railway stations and stock, roadside locations, buses and Victoria Coach Station.

London Underground is London's biggest outdoor media owner with 33,000 station and 80,000 on-board train sites.

Townsend said: "We are expecting a step-change in the market value of the business which, together with new efficiencies, will maximise revenues to invest in improving London's transport infrastructure. As a publicly funded body, we have a duty to generate the best possible return from our advertising estate."

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