AB InBev Appoints Publicis’ Epsilon as U.S. Data Agency of Record

By Erik Oster 

The world’s largest brewer has a new data partner.

AB InBev has appointed Publicis data consultancy Epsilon as its U.S. data agency of record, looking to leverage Epsilon’s capabilities to better understand its consumers in service of becoming a more people-centric company and craft more audience-oriented media plans delivering reaching customers in more relevant ways.

“Understanding consumers, personalizing their journey and delivering data-driven outcomes are critical for brands to endure, grow and win,” Epsilon CEO Bryan Kennedy said in a statement. “Through the power of Epsilon PeopleCloud, our model positions AB InBev firmly in control of its customer relationships, driving tight connectivity between data and media to unlock growth opportunities at a global scale.”


The appointment does not impact AB InBev’s relationships with its existing creative and media agency partners. AB InBev currently works with Dentsu on media buying and planning in the U.S. and handles creative through a variety of agency partners, as well as in-house agency draftLine. Dentsu’s Vizeum was appointed as AB InBev’s U.S. media agency of record in 2017.

Outside the U.S., AB InBev will partner with existing holding company partners in local markets to deliver data responsibilities, which could lead to the development of new roles, according to a source with knowledge of the account, with Luiz Barros leading data operations for AB InBev globally.

The appointment follows news earlier this month that Epsilon agreed to a $150 million settlement with the Department of Justice for selling data utilized in elder fraud schemes, criminal charges stemming from before Publicis’ acquisition of the company. Discussing the matter with Adweek at the time of Publicis’ 2020 Q4 earnings announcement, Publicis CEO Arthur Sadoun characterized the matter as long-since resolved and the charges as related to a select number of employees unrepresentative of Epsilon as a whole.