$100 Mil. Staples Media in Play

NEW YORK Office-supply giant Staples has put its $100 million-plus media buying and planning account into review, the client has confirmed.

The incumbent is WPP Group’s MediaCom here, which has been invited to defend.

“We’re very happy with them,” a Staples representative said. The review was called because, “We’re just constantly looking at vendor relationships to evaluate expenses and new services.”

Framingham, Mass.-based Staples reviewed its media account five years ago, when MediaCom initially added the business.

The rep declined to discuss details of the review process, and would not name other agencies invited to pitch, saying only that the company hopes to complete the review “in the next few months.”

Creative chores, handled by Interpublic Group’s McCann Erickson, are not being reviewed.

Staples spent $95 million on ads in 2005, increasing that outlay to $110 million through the first 10 months of 2006, per Nielsen Monitor-Plus.

MediaCom did not immediately return calls, but the agency is expected to defend.

Staples is the third significant media account to go into play in recent weeks, following separate reviews by the American Legacy Foundation and United Airlines.