NEW YORK American Express has hired Crispin, Porter + Bogusky to handle creative duties on Open, a division that targets small-business owners, AmEx confirmed.
Longtime AmEx agency Ogilvy & Mather had handled the assignment back to its launch in 2002, according to an AmEx representative.
The incumbent and MDC Partners' Crispin pitched ideas for the assignment and the client selected Crispin, the rep said. "We were looking for a new approach to build on the brand and our success in the small business sector," explained the rep. "We think Crispin Porter + Bogusky will be a good fit for this need. We approached Crispin because they have a track record for innovation with their clients."
Major media spending on Open has ranged from about $55 million in 2005 to more than $100 million in 2006, according to Nielsen Monitor-Plus. Through April of this year, the figure was around $18 million, per Nielsen.
WPP Group's Ogilvy here remains a "core agency partner" that handles brand image and consumer card duties on the main brand both in the U.S and abroad, the rep said. Crispin's first work is expected in a couple of months, according to the rep.
Crispin could not be reached and Ogilvy had no immediate comment.
All told, AmEx spent about $480 million in major measured media last year and about $100 million through April, according to Nielsen.