Johnson & Johnson reviews Euro media

Johnson & Johnson is kicking off a market-by-market review of its media planning and buying arrangements across Europe.

The process is expected to include the £36 million UK business, held by Initiative.

Initiative won the healthcare and pharmaceuticals manufacturer's account in 1998, when J&J realigned its global media business into Interpublic.

The review is expected to kick off in Eastern Europe, before moving across the continent. The account includes brands such as Neutrogena, Acuvue and Clean & Clear, as well as baby-care lines.

The news comes just days after reports that J&J is close to moving the media brief for its estimated $50 million consumer brands account in China from Universal McCann to OMD.

It is thought the move was precipitated by J&J moving planning duties for its skincare labels in China into OMD at the end of 2005.

Insiders predict reviews will now kick off in other markets in the Far East.

Last week, J&J announced a year-on-year sales decline of 1.1 per cent for the fourth quarter of 2005. Sales fell to $12.6 billion over the period.

J&J declined to comment on the story.