THE BOOK OF LISTS: The 10 Most contentious pitches

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.

2. Egg

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.

4. Ellesse

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".

6. Hackett

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


8. Barclays

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.

10. Brita

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".


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