After months of deliberating, Procter & Gamble has chosen which North American media agencies will handle its more than $2 billion in media spend.
The major winner for P&G's North American media buying and planning is Omnicom Media Group (for which this is all new business). The win is so significant that OMG will launch a third media network to handle it (OMG already houses the OMD and PHD brands). Details for that network are still being firmed up, said sources with knowledge of the plans, but P&G is the charter client—it is not expected to be the only one.
Dentsu Aegis' Carat, which picked up some P&G business in the last few years, added more work to its roster.
Though Publicis Groupe's Starcom Mediavest Group is retaining some P&G business (Duracell, Cosmetics, Fragrances, Salon Professional and Hair Color in the U.S., and planning in Canada), sources with knowledge of P&G's decision said the group is holding onto accounts that the packaged-goods giant plans to sell off in the near future. SMG, however, remains in control of the lion's share of P&G's media business outside of North America (WPP's MediaCom also handles some non-U.S. work).
P&G in May announced it was putting its agencies in review in hopes of reducing the number of shops it works with. Its media spend has already dropped significantly in the last few years—2014 media spend in the U.S. was estimated by Kantar to be $2.66 billion and spend through the first six months of 2015 was $980 million.
"This change will help us reach more consumers with better precision and greater efficiency to grow and create value," read a P&G statement. "Both Omnicom Media Group and Carat demonstrated superior and proven performance in data, analytics, planning, buying, talent and overall financial value. We are integrating planning and buying, and operating across North America markets to streamline operations and increase efficiency. And we will tailor media capability category by category to meet their unique business needs to more effectively reach consumers for their brands. We will see cost savings by simplifying our agency structure and negotiating new rates for the services our brands need today, and continue to reinvest to drive brand growth."