Leo Burnett’s media department and Motive are to merge into a
single media brand in the UK within the next few months, following
Burnetts’ acquisition of a 49 per cent stake in Motive’s parent, Bartle
Bogle Hegarty, at the end of last year.
The new operation, likely to go under the Motive banner, will be headed
by the BBH media dependant’s chief executive, Mark Cranmer, and will
pool staff and resources.
While the two parties are insisting that no decision has yet been made,
talks are already underway about the nature and location of the new
company, and clients are being canvassed.
Cranmer would not confirm the plans, saying ’anything’s possible’. He
added: ’Nothing’s at any advanced stage, but we have made an absolute
commitment to work together forever.’
Plans to take Burnetts’ media out of house follow the creation of a
Burnetts media operation in the US and Australia, called Starcom. Jeff
Fergus, the chairman of Burnetts in London, said any separate Burnetts
media operation in the UK would not necessarily use the Starcom name,
fuelling reports that Motive will become the joint BBH/Burnetts media
A statement from the two agencies issued this week confirmed that in
future, international media development of BBH’s business will be driven
through the Burnetts network where appropriate. The Motive name will
operate in other markets as a media planning operation, with media
buying via the local Burnetts media team.
However, the statement acknowledges the uniqueness of the UK market,
where both Motive and Burnetts’ media department have developed business
independent of their creative partners.
Cranmer said there would be no reason for either media operation to pool
media buying volume, because neither agency does deals with media
All deals were on a client-by-client basis, he said.
Cranmer said the priorities for the two media operations were to win the
international media business for Tag Heuer and Levi’s jeans. The Levi’s
pitch takes place later this month. An announcement on the UK media
operations will not come before then.