UPDATE: Several hours after we initially reached out to Havas and approximately three hours after we posted this story, the agency contacted us to claim that there have been no changes in its relationship with Citi, for which it has handled direct marketing since 2012.
The initial post is below.
Today we hear from multiple sources that the relationship between Citi and Havas has changed, with the client moving some or all of its direct marketing business away from the agency’s Chicago office.
According to those who reached out to us, agency and client have been making small changes for some time, with leadership on the account going through a comprehensive revolving door-style shift over the past six months.
Citi last reviewed this business in late 2012, sending direct mail and collateral for the retail bank and credit cards to Havas while tasking Wunderman with digital advertising for both units. The latter agency’s New York office had previously handled the work assigned to Havas at that time, and Adweek reported the news as “a net loss for Wunderman” while predicting layoffs at the WPP network.
Other sources also tell us that there have been some staffing changes at the Chicago office unrelated to the recent departure of creative leaders who worked on the Dish and Ragu accounts. In both cases, we hear that the clients requested unspecified changes to their Havas teams.
Citi has been reviewing its larger agency roster in recent months, most prominently consolidating its global media business with Publicis last September. Publicis Worldwide still serves as the company’s creative agency of record after winning the account away from Fallon in 2007.
The client declined to comment for this post.