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ExxonMobil Preps Global Search

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ExxonMobil is laying the groundwork for a global review of its creative and media duties, with an eye toward consolidating the business at fewer agencies, sources said.

The Dallas-based oil company is said to be talking to consultants about managing a worldwide search. Sources were unable to identify the prospective consultants.

ExxonMobil's global media spending total was not immediately available. In the U.S. alone, the company spent $111 million in major measured media last year and $51 million in the first seven months of 2010, according to Nielsen. The 2009 figure was down 15 percent from 2008's total of $131 million. Those totals don't include online spending.

The creative and media assignments are split among several shops based on business lines.

Omnicom Group units DDB and OMD, for example, handle creative and media duties, respectively, on fuel advertising. Corporate image efforts are handled by Havas units Euro RSCG (creative) and MPG (media) and lubricants and chemicals ads by Interpublic Group units McCann Erickson (creative) and Universal McCann (media).

The agencies either did not return calls or declined to comment and the company could not immediately be reached.

Sources expect ExxonMobil to consider both roster and non-roster shops for the business.

Word of the pending review comes three months after ExxonMobil reported net income of $13.8 billion for the first half of the year—up 60 percent from the same period last year. The company plans to report its third-quarter results on Oct. 28.