The news will be a blow to the incumbent, Mediaedge: cia, which had retained the business on a short-term basis in the summer after a full-scale advertising review that kicked off in November 2001.
Following this review, DHL centralised its creative account into Ogilvy & Mather. Previously its mainland Europe advertising was handled by DDB's Paris office while BMP DDB looked after the UK business.
Mediaedge:cia and Carat pitched head-to-head for the media account, but it was inconclusive and DHL remained with the WPP-owned network.
However, DHL has become increasingly integrated into its parent company, Deutsche Post, which already uses Carat to handle its media, and all of DHL's suppliers are being audited to see if any savings can be achieved.
Earlier this week, DHL and Deutsche Post announced that the sponsorship of the Jordan Formula 1 team would be terminated, leaving Eddie Jordan's team with a £16 million budget shortfall. The move is seen as part of a repositioning by DHL from its "Passion for speed" campaign created by DDB.
DDB worked on the account from May 1999 and created its first TV advertising campaign in January 2000. In the UK this was based on the line: "DHL - we keep your promises."
DHL was also an official sponsor of the England football team during this year's World Cup.
No-one at Mediaedge:cia or Carat would comment on the news and a spokeswoman for DHL denied that the account was reviewing.