A raft of agencies are lining up to fight for the pounds 7 million UK
centralised media business of the German cosmetics-to-household products
The agencies, believed to include at least one network, have been told
to prepare for a winner-takes-all pitch early in the new year.
Benckiser’s media planning and buying is currently split between BMP DDB
Needham and Manning Gottlieb Media, but the client has been trying to
streamline its UK roster since September 1993.
At that time, the account was shared between the incumbents and Austin
West Media. Following a competitive review, Austin West was kicked off
The Benckiser marketing director, Keith Edwards, said at the time: ‘We
have not seen conclusive proof of the benefits to be gained from
centralising our business.’
However, a series of top-level changes at Benckiser are believed to have
forced centralisation back on to the agenda. In June, the company
appointed a new European marketing director and a new managing director.
In September, Benckiser also poached Ian Hutchinson, the international
media manager at MediaCom, as its first international media director.
Benckiser is already understood to be reviewing its media arrangements
across a number of European markets. In Switzerland, the company has
just reappointed its incumbent media agency, Robert Baier, following a
Nevertheless, Hutchinson denied reports that the company is planning a
pan-European media centralisation. ‘We use different agencies in
different countries and we decide our needs as and when. There is no
rationale to use one agency network,’ he said.
Edwards denied there was a formal review and said: ‘Like most companies,
we get a lot of approaches from agencies and we do have informal
discussions to make sure we have our finger on the pulse.’
Paul Taylor, joint media director at BMP, said: ‘No-one has advised us
of any review on Benckiser.’