At the beginning of the month, Priceline announced it was in the early stages of a creative review and that incumbent agency Butler, Shine, Stern & Partners, who have held the account since 2006, were participating. Now it appears the incumbent agency has opted out of the review.
“We feel that focusing on current clients, new clients and our new business pipeline is a better use of resources,” BSSP CEO Greg Stern told Adweek. “BSSP and Priceline have had a long, successful relationship—far longer than the average client-agency tenure. We wish them nothing but success in the future.”
The agency’s decision to opt out immediately preceded Priceline’s naming of seven semifinalists in the review, identified by Priceline chief marketing officer Brett Keller as Grey, Droga5, Arnold, BBDO, Leo Burnett, Venables Bell & Partners and The Martin Agency. “They’ve got a lot of great talent there,” he told Adweek, referring to Butler, Shine, Stern & Partners. “We would have loved to have seen them participate, but we completely respect and understand their decision.”
Priceline, which Kantar Media estimates spends $40 million on media annually, will visit the seven semifinalists to select finalists in the review next month. The review, which is being managed by Ark Advisors, is expected to conclude by the end of the summer.