In a significant shift, Johnson & Johnson’s U.S. media buying business is leaving a unit that Interpublic Group created for J&J seven years ago.
Omnicom Group’s OMD is inheriting the assignment from J3, a unit of Interpublic’s UM. That said, J3 continues to handle media planning, according to sources. J&J spent $1.01 billion on media in 2013, up from $836 million in 2012, according to Kantar Media.
In confirming the shift a J&J representative said, “Johnson & Johnson has many agency partnerships globally and from time to time, we make business decisions to adjust those partnerships. With that in mind, we will adjust our U.S. agency partnerships, maintaining our U.S. media planning with J3/Universal McCann and U.S. media buying will move to OMD. IPG, the holding company of J3/Universal McCann, remains a highly valued partner to Johnson & Johnson around the world and will continue to play an important role for us in the U.S. and globally.”
To retain the business in 2007, IPG put together a dedicated team from UM that became J3. The unit focuses solely on J&J and accesses resources from other IPG units as needed.
Five years later, J3 successfully defended its business in a review against OMD and WPP Group’s MEC. The U.S. is J&J’s home turf and where it spends a significant portion of its global media dollars.