Sara Lee Consolidates Media With Starcom

LOS ANGELES Sara Lee has consolidated its U.S. media planning and buying business at Publicis Groupe’s Starcom in Chicago without a review, the client has confirmed.

Sara Lee spent $200 million on domestic ads through November 2003, per Nielsen Monitor-Plus.

The client, also based in Chicago, markets such brands as Chock Full O’ Nuts, Hanes, Playtex and Jimmy Dean. Starcom had already handled some of those brands.

Shops that now lose some work to Starcom include Publicis Groupe’s Optimedia in Dallas; Interpublic Group shops Mullen in Winston-Salem, N.C., and The Martin Agency in Richmond, Va.; Havas-owned MPG in Chicago; Omnicom Group’s OMD in Chicago; and independent Shahid & Co. in New York.

All told, Starcom added an estimated $100-125 million in the consolidation.

“By consolidating these responsibilities, we will improve our media strategy and execution throughout Sara Lee’s U.S. brand portfolio,” said Lee Chaden, executive vice president of global marketing and sales, in a statement. “We will establish a consistent approach to understanding consumer media behavior, which will drive smarter, more effective long-term planning and media investment decisions. In addition, we will further improve the buying efficiencies, flexibility and accountability within our media portfolio.”