Samsung has handed Leo Burnett its global creative account, amid reports that JWT and Berlin Cameron United failed to crack the brief.
Publicis Groupe will be responsible for all creative work on Samsung's global brand marketing campaign, roughly one-third of its overall marketing and advertising budget, which totals $600 million.
Burnett's first task will be a campaign for Samsung's sponsorship of the 2006 Winter Olympics in Turin. Observers suggest this should already be close to completion, as WPP picked up the business last November.
At the time, JWT claimed it was worth $400 million, but now says the spend amounted to around $60 million. A JWT spokeswoman said: "It never materialised as the big account it was made out to be."
A Samsung spokesman refused to comment on whether WPP's failure on the account after a year in the role was the impetus for the change. He said: "The WPP relationship was never exclusive and we have always been able to look at other agencies to keep our options open.
"Our contract with WPP still exists and its agencies will still be working with us on our local business."
Samsung's regional advertising arrangements, which make up two-thirds of its adspend, will not change. Cheil Communications, its in-house agency, shares the local briefs with FCB and JWT.
WPP's other relationships with Samsung, which include Group M looking after media and Wunderman handling DM, are not affected.
- Comment, page 52.