Pitch Update

All rather quiet on the new-business front. First, the bad news.

Rather predictably, the Homeric saga that is the pitch for BMW rumbles on, as the incumbent, Vizeum, and UM London continue to be left dangling. A result is expected in the next few weeks (it is claimed).

Channel 5's quest for an advertising agency to promote the arrival of Big Brother to its line-up is going at a similarly slow pace. Though agencies haven't heard anything for weeks, the Northern & Shell chairman, Richard Desmond, is going to have to decide soon because Celebrity Big Brother is due to start in August.

The media pitch for the French cheese manufacturer Bel Group (the owner of the Laughing Cow and Boursin brands) is being handled from France and the shortlisted agencies (Carat, OMD, Starcom MediaVest Group and Mindshare) expect a result in July.

Elsewhere, representatives from Publicis Groupe, Group M and Aegis made presentations to the Ferrero board in Torino, Italy, last week as part of the review to consolidate its £250 million pan-European business. Officially, a decision from the Nutella owner is due by October, but the groups are expecting more work to come their way in the interim.

In other news, The Huffington Post, the AOL-owned US news and current affairs website, is on the hunt for a UK agency to create a campaign to support its UK launch this summer. The site, which was sold by the co-founder Arianna Huffington to AOL earlier this year, has been in contact with UK agencies inviting them to pitch for the business.


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