Ten shops set to pitch for COI’s pounds 63m media

Ten media agencies will compete for the Central Office of Information’s four media accounts as part of a streamlining of its pounds 63 million media buying activities.

Ten media agencies will compete for the Central Office of

Information’s four media accounts as part of a streamlining of its

pounds 63 million media buying activities.



The COI’s largest account, the pounds 25 million TV business, will see

the incumbent, the Media Centre, Zenith Media and CIA Medianetwork take

part in a pitch.



On the shortlist for the centralised pounds 20 million press account are

Zenith, which currently handles the regional press business, the Media

Centre, TMD Carat and a combined team of J. Walter Thompson and the

Network.



Leo Burnett, the incumbent, is joined on the radio shortlist by Zenith,

New PHD and TMD, while Initiative Media, Universal McCann, BBJ Media

Services and the Media Centre will pitch for the cinema account.



Most top media companies applied to be considered for at least one of

the pitches, although BMP Optimum decided not to enter. It pulled in

more than pounds 60 million of new business last year, which it is now

bedding down.



A number of companies are understood to have applied for all four

accounts, including TMD, Zenith, CIA and the Media Centre, while several

shops were disappointed at not making it on to the list.



’The COI has looked at the biggest spenders in each sector. The process

has been a waste of time for some good media operators,’ said one.



Pitches will be held from the end of this month - cinema on 27 May,

radio on 29 May, TV on 2 June and press on 4 June. Decisions are

expected by mid-June with appointments due to be effective from

August.



Peter Buchanan, head of the COI’s marketing communications group, said

the decision to centralise executional media planning and buying for the

four media had been driven by developments in the media marketplace.



’Cross-media ownership will mean we need to meet new challenges,’ he

said.