- BBJ has secured the entire £75 million Peugeot-Citroen UK media account in a move that seems likely to break open current client conflict practice in the industry. The holding of both halves of the PSA business in BBJ, which reverses a strategy to split the account with Carat, appears to leave BBJ's sister agency free to handle the £360 million European Renault account that it scooped last month. With Carat already handling BMW in Europe, the group as a whole now holds an unprecedented three major auto accounts.
Rumours had circulated over the last few weeks that Peugeot-Citroen were reopening discussions with incumbent Initiative as well as with Media Planning, Optimedia and OMD following the news that Carat had won the Renault business. However, sources indicate that the consent of Renault was the main stumbling block to a deal keeping all three auto businesses within the group. The move of both halves of PSA into BBJ would seem to indicate that such consent has since been given.
The immediate consequences of the deal are expected to include the long-awaited merger between Initiative and Western, which handles Vauxhall. The move, which appeared imminent following Initiative's loss of PSA, had been delayed while Carat's hold on the carmaker appeared to weaken. With the news that PSA has adopted to remain with BBJ, the final stumbling block to consolidating the two agencies is removed.