Omnicom has this week unveiled the structure of its new European media
network, Optimum Media Direction, which will include a UK office to
handle international clients.
The dollars 7.1 billion-billing media specialist pulls together the
media planning and buying functions of Omnicom’s BBDO and DDB agencies
in 20 European countries. It is possible that TBWA’s media business -
currently handled by Carat’s Eurospace - could eventually be pulled into
the new network.
The network will take in all media activity, including strategy,
planning, buying, new media, sponsorship and barter.
In the UK, however, although there will be an OMD office, both New PHD -
the UK BBDO media operation - and BMP DDB Media will continue to operate
as separate entities.
Tim Cox, currently the European media director of BBDO, will take over
as chairman of OMD in the UK, handling UK co-ordination of international
clients and the introduction of pan-European research in the UK.
Derek Morris, the joint media director of BMP DDB, said that the launch
of OMD would have little effect on the way the two media operations
worked in the UK. But he added that they would benefit from being part
of a stronger European network.
OMD is described as ‘a third-generation media specialist’, and its
launch is being seen as a signal that Omnicom is disentangling itself
from the Media Partnership - the media buying group that includes J.
Walter Thompson and Ogilvy and Mather. However, an official Omnicom
statement insists: ‘TMP will continue to play a role in providing
leverage and research.’
Viviane Prat has been named as president of the new network and she will
also retain her role as president of OMD in France. Eduard van Eyk, from
the German operation, is due to take on the role of European vice-
As well as the UK brands remaining separate, BBDO’s Media Direction and
Media Team brands, which exist in Europe, and DDB’s Optimum Media will
also retain their current identities, but they will operate under the