Busch Entertainment Takes $25-Mil. Media Buying In-House

ST. LOUIS – In a move that will affect three agencies, Busch Entertainment Corp. consolidated its media buying and planning work with Anheuser-Busch’s in-house Busch Media Group worth roughly $25 million, it was learned last week.
DDB Needham Chicago; GSD&M/Austin, Texas; and D’Arcy Masius Benton & Bowles/L.A. lose the media buying and planning functions for Busch’s theme parks across the nation, but will still retain the creative portions.
Needham takes the biggest hit, losing the business for Busch Gardens Tampa and Williamsburg, Sea World of Florida and Ohio; Cypress Gardens, Winter Haven, Fla.; Adventure Island, Tampa; Water Country USA, Williamsburg; and Sesame Place, Langhorne, Pa.
GSD&M handles work for Sea World of Texas, and DMB&B handles Sea World of California.
‘The decision to move Busch Entertainment Corp.’s media buying and planning work to Busch Media Group continues the natural evolution of BMG, which assumed management responsibility for media planning and buying for all beer brands in 1992,’ said Busch Entertainment Group director/advertising Susan Busch Transou in a statement on Friday. ‘This move will allow BEC to maximize media efficiencies and effectiveness while allowing our advertising agencies to focus on creative and concept development. We remain in strong partnerships will all three agencies and will continue to do so.’
In 1992, A-B pulled in roughly $140 million worth of media buying from DMB&B/St. Louis, and media planning for its beer business at DMB&B and Needham.
Busch Entertainment Corp. was the last of A-B’s divisions to move its media buying and planning in-house. Busch Media group was set up six years ago to handle national TV buying.
It is not clear if the agencies would have to lay off staff as a result of the shift.
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