Pitch Update: Three agencies remain in contention for Asda account

LG is seeking a creative agency.

Asda: AMV BBDO, FCB Inferno and Publicis Groupe are involved
Asda: AMV BBDO, FCB Inferno and Publicis Groupe are involved

Ongoing

Three agencies remain in contention for Asda’s creative account after VCCP Blue and Wunderman Thompson were knocked out of the process, which the supermarket is running in-house. Incumbent Abbott Mead Vickers BBDO is now up against Interpublic shop FCB Inferno and a Publicis Groupe team led by Leo Burnett. The review follows Asda’s change of ownership and the exit of former chief customer officer Anna-Maree Shaw, who has yet to be replaced.

British Heart Foundation will now be seeking a new creative agency after MullenLowe opted not to repitch for the charity’s account, having previously indicated that it would. Laurence Green, executive partner at MullenLowe, said: “Our pipeline looks strong and so we’ve made the difficult decision to step aside in favour of existing clients and other opportunities. We’ve had a great run of success with British Heart Foundation and obviously wish them all the best.” BHF is working with AAR on the process and a result is expected in May.

Reviews

South Korean electronics company LG is on the lookout for a European creative agency. In November 2019, LG awarded its global media account, worth an estimated $800m (£584m), to PHD. LG did not respond to a request for comment. 

Wins

Wagamama has named Uncommon Creative Studio its lead creative partner. Uncommon was awarded the business without a pitch and will be working with the brand on a project basis on brand activations and fame-driving briefs over the coming months as the hospitality industry begins to reopen. Its first project saw Wagamama place benches that had been repaired using a technique inspired by kintsugithe Japanese art of repair, around Brighton, Bristol and Manchester. The incumbent is MullenLowe. 

New Commercial Arts has won the advertising account for Habitat following a competitive pitch. Portas has previously worked with the brand and created the 2017 TV ad "Habitat voyeur", featuring a couple kissing on Habitat’s Hendricks sofa. Sainsbury's bought Habitat as part of its £1.4bn swoop on Argos in 2016. It is reportedly planning to expand the range of Habitat furniture it sells in Argos and Sainsbury's stores during the course of 2021.

Fever-Tree has appointed Born Social to its digital and social account after a review through Creativebrief that started last year. A spokesperson for the brand said: “Over the last few months, we have met agencies with different strengths to help support our digital capabilities. We are delighted to be working with Born Social to bring our digital strategy to life and look forward to bringing them on as our partner.”

Shelter has appointed Dark Horses to create and implement a campaign with the aim of unlocking football audiences to broaden understanding of the housing emergency affecting the UK. Dark Horses was appointed without a pitch and was chosen for its understanding of sport and how it can be leveraged to create a positive change. There was no incumbent.

FirstVet, which claims to be the world’s first digital veterinary clinic, has appointed Elvis to develop a number of campaigns to build brand awareness in the UK. The agency was appointed without a pitch and there was no incumbent. The first activity will be an out-of-home campaign with an integrated push to follow.

The Kite Factory has won the media planning and buying contract for global video games publisher Wargaming following a competitive pitch. There is no incumbent because media was previously managed in-house.

The agency has also won international educational charity Association for Project Management following a competitive pitch. John Ayling & Associates was the incumbent.

Voluntary Services Overseas has appointed integrated agency WPNC to partner the charity in overhauling its direct fundraising strategy and creative approach. The appointment follows a tender process that included a virtual pitch as a result of the pandemic. VSO has previously worked with agencies including Arthur London, Open Creates and Good Agency.

Rude Health, the dairy-free drinks and cereals company, has appointed BMB its first creative agency. The appointment was made after a pitch handled directly by the brand. There was no incumbent. BMB will drive brand awareness and support distribution growth through an engaging, culturally relevant campaign that will sit across a range of touch points. Its first work is planned to appear in September.

Crown Paints has appointed independent Leeds agency CreativeRace following a competitive pitch. The agency will support Crown with its future plans by leading its retail strategy and store design projects. There is no incumbent.

Publicis Groupe agency MSL UK has won its third product brief with Puma to launch the Puma Mayze to its young female audience. It follows MSL’s appointment as the creative and strategic lead comms agency for Puma Europe following a three-way competitive pitch in 2020.

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