Asda is set to appoint a new creative agency after the retailer’s creative pitch was narrowed down to two contenders, neither of which is the incumbent, Abbott Mead Vickers BBDO.
As well as the Omnicom shop, FCB Inferno was also eliminated from the process.
Publicis Groupe is bidding to once again bring together the brand’s creative and media accounts under one holding company through a team led by Leo Burnett.
The Publicis Groupe team is facing off against Havas London. Until now, Havas' involvement was not widely known among people close to the process.
If Publicis Groupe emerges victorious, it will be the third time in 12 years it has won Asda as a new client, following successful pitches for Saatchi & Saatchi in both 2009 and 2016, when it also appointed Publicis Media’s Blue 449 (now Spark Foundry), which retained Asda’s media when the brand appointed AMV in 2018.
In both cases, the supermarket did not stick around long, however. It swapped Saatchis for VCCP in 2013 before switching back three years later, only to move to AMV just two years after that.
As a result of the business' itinerant history, AMV will have entered into the review in the knowledge that Asda’s track record did not bode well for its chances of retaining the account.
Asda declined to comment.