Omnicom moves in on global HP

Omnicom's BBDO plots major assault on computer giant's $100 million global advertising business.

Omnicom is making an audacious bid to strengthen its hold on the $100 million HP global advertising account.

Senior BBDO executives are said to be in advanced talks with HP in New York concerning taking on a greater portion of the global advertising business, above and below the line.

HP currently uses a number of agencies to handle its advertising. Goodby Silverstein & Partners, which is owned by Omnicom, currently works on HP's global branding account. It is expected to retain its portion of the business.

The majority of HP's advertising distribution is handled by Publicis Groupe agencies, which adapt Goodby Silverstein's work on HP's printing and imaging brands worldwide and do the same for the personal services business in markets outside of Europe.

Interpublic Group's McCann Erickson handles pan-European distribution for HP's personal services group. The agency won the business from Publicis in March 2006.

HP is in the middle of a pan-European DM review (Campaign, 22 February), which is expected to continue until any decision is made on a global realignment. The Omnicom-owned Proximity is one of the agencies pitching for the business, along with the incumbent Publicis Dialog.

Publicis began working on HP in 1996, after securing the global printing and imaging portion of the business from Saatchi & Saatchi. In the same year, HP's global branding account moved into Goodby Silverstein.

Since then, Publicis has made steady inroads into HP's global advertising and DM accounts worldwide, winning the personal services portion of the business, before losing the pan-European part of that account to McCann.

Omnicom's bid for control of the HP account comes shortly after the holding company lost out on the global advertising account for Dell to WPP in December.

HP hadn't responded to calls about talks with Omnicom as Campaign went to press.

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