Pitch update: House of Fraser, Ancestry, Caffe Nero, Gymbox and more

Three brands are considering pitches from agencies, two London-only brands are reviewing their advertising requirements, and one agency - Adam & Eve/DDB - has soared to the top of the new-business rankings thanks to its £70m billings haul.

Ancestry: three creative agencies are pitching for its business
Ancestry: three creative agencies are pitching for its business

Ongoing reviews

Pitches for House of Fraser took place yesterday (1 August). Creature of London, The & Partnership London and Who Wot Why are competing. Uncommon was involved in the process but pulled out before this week. The incumbent agency, 18 Feet & Rising, declined to repitch.   

Ancestry, which helps people find out their family history, is looking for an agency for a creative project. It held initial pitches with three agencies – Anomaly, FCB Inferno and McCann London – last week, and all three have been invited to repitch in the next few weeks. The brand previously worked with Droga5 London.

Following last week's Caffe Nero pitch, three agencies (down from four) are now in the running and the final pitch has been scheduled for the first week of September. 

New-business rankings: creative accounts


Gymbox, the London gym chain, is reviewing its advertising requirements and has had initial conversations with prospective agencies this week. Mother is not involved in the process after having worked for Gymbox on a project basis.

Liquid, a new Jaguar-Land-Rover-backed car rental brand, is reviewing its advertising requirements ahead of a possible marketing assault. InMotion Ventures, the startup studio that was launched by JLR in 2016, has contacted agencies with a request for information but has not yet specified a marketing brief. 

Iwoca, the business-to-business money lender, is on the lookout for an agency to handle creative advertising. Ingenuity is assisting with agency search and the brand has said it is looking for agencies that "understand fintech", according to a source familiar with the review. 

(Correction (3 August) - an original version of this article said Iwoca is also looking for a PR agency. Iwoca has subsequently said this is not the case)

New-business rankings: media accounts


Shell has confirmed its global agency roster, two weeks after it was first reported by Campaign US. The agencies are Doremus, Edelman, Geometry, H&K Strategies, Mirum (J Walter Thompson), VCCP, VCCP Retail and Wunderman, while MediaCom retains the media business. JWT retains the master brand business, which was not part of the review.

Kenco has chosen Karmarama as its lead creative agency following a competitive pitch for the £10m account. Karmarama fought off Saatchi & Saatchi and VCCP to win the account, which was previously held by JWT London

Barclaycard has appointed Droga5 London as its lead creative agency following a competitive review. Droga5 beat Leo Burnett London and Pablo in the final round. Iris, the incumbent, did not repitch, and Oystercatchers handled the process.

Samsung has appointed Leo Burnett as lead agency for its global Visual Display business, starting with a brief to create work for the Korean tech brand's QLED TVs, following a pitch. Samsung has previously used Adam & Eve/DDB for QLED TV work but the appointment does not affect the Omnicom agency's relationshup with Samsung in North America.

Personalised health service Thriva has appointed 18 Feet & Rising as its first creative agency following a competitive pitch. 

Mr President has been appointed by Plan International to work on a three-year campaign on girls’ rights, following a competitive pitch. The charity has previously worked with agencies including Abbott Mead Vickers BBDO and Saatchi & Saatchi. 

Recipe has been hired as social agency for Natural Balance Foods' Trek bars and snack range. Wavemaker previously handled social for the brand.

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