Coke Consolidates Media With Starcom MediaVest

LOS ANGELES Coca-Cola has named Publicis Groupe’s Starcom MediaVest Group the winner in a review for its estimated $350 million consolidated U.S. media planning and buying business, the client confirmed.

SMG, whose networks Starcom in Chicago and MediaVest in New York are Coke roster shops, prevailed over the other Coke media agencies: Interpublic Group’s Universal McCann; Aegis Group’s Carat; and WPP Group’s MindShare, the only non-roster contender.

Following its U.S. win, SMG was awarded the estimated $30 million media assignment for China after a review that had been narrowed to SMG and Carat, sources said. Publicis’s Zenith Optimedia was the incumbent.

Of the U.S. review, Coca-Cola vice president of integrated communications David Raines said “what SMG was able to bring was a fully rounded set of capabilities. They have the best suite of strategic planning tools in the business, the ability to connect those insights and tools into good plans for investing in market, and the capability to execute and devise creative ways to embed ourselves into programming.”