Saga becomes latest CIA client to review after Media Edge merger

LONDON - The Saga group is reviewing its media planning and buying account less than a month after the merger between the incumbent, CIA UK, and The Media Edge.

It becomes the third piece of business to review out of the agency since the alliance was announced, and follows Wrigleys and the household goods manufacturer Henkel.

Saga, which incorporates a number of businesses catering for the over-50s, spends around £7 million above the line in the UK. However, below-the-line activity is expected to add around £5 million to the total.

The agency has worked with Saga for more than ten years and benefited from a centralisation of media arrangements for the group's other businesses in 1998, beating Carat Direct for the combined account.

CIA took Saga on to TV for the first time as it attempted to change the image of over- 50s from silver-haired zimmer frame devotees to more active members of the community. The change in image extended to a glossy lifestyle magazine, featuring glamorous cover stars such as Mick Jagger and Julie Christie.

Ogilvy & Mather was originally appointed to create the TV rebranding campaign but was replaced by Doner Cardwell Hawkins last year. Saga appointed RPM3 to handle its financial arm, Saga Services, in February.

Planning and buying for Saga's operations continues to be pooled and the review will include the group's interests in holidays, radio and home and motor insurance. Both CIA and Saga were unavailable for comment.

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