Procter & Gamble calls UK £144m media planning pitch

LONDON - Procter & Gamble is to review its £144m UK media planning business. The FMCG giant is in the early stages of talking to its roster agencies about a consolidation of the UK business, potentially into one agency.

The review is likely to involve the P&G roster agencies MediaCom, Starcom Motive, MediaVest and Zenith Optimedia.

P&G's move follows similar reviews in other European countries that resulted in Starcom winning the planning business in France and the account being split between Starcom and MediaCom in Germany.

MediaCom and the Publicis network Starcom MediaVest both have global relationships with P&G. MediaCom handles UK planning for many of P&G's key brands including Fairy. Starcom works on media planning for brands including Always, Bounce, Charmin, Bounty and Tampax.

Last year MediaCom also won the £8m media planning and print buying business for Clairol after it was purchased by P&G.

Zenith, which recently captured a chunk of the P&G planning business in Asia, won several UK P&G planning accounts, including Sunny Delight and Head & Shoulders, following the closure of Saatchi & Saatchi's in-house media department in 2001.

P&G's decision to look at a consolidation of its media planning follows a similar move by its fellow FMCG multinational Masterfoods last year. MediaCom won the consolidated £120m UK Masterfoods planning business.

UK creative work for P&G is through Saatchi & Saatchi, Leo Burnett, Grey and Publicis.

Bernard Balderston, the associate director of media at P&G, was unavailable for comment.

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