Starcom to Buy Media for Heinz’ Frozen Foods

CHICAGO The H.J. Heinz Co. awarded media buying duties for its estimated $15 million frozen food division to Starcom. Omnicom’s OMD will retain planning on the business, according to the company.

The move consolidates all buying for the Pittsburgh company at the Publicis Groupe agency. The Chicago agency has handled buying for the company’s ketchup, condiments and sauces for the past five years. The unit also handles the recently spun-off Pet Foods and Pet Snacks division now owned by the Del Monte Foods Company. Starcom will place about $40 million on behalf of Heinz and Del Monte this year, according to the company.

The assignment includes the company’s Ore-Ida, Bagel Bites, Smart Ones, Boston Market and TGI Friday’s frozen foods and Delimex brands. Spending on those brands was nearly $15 million last year, according to CMR.

“We have benefited from Starcom’s strong stewardship during the past five years with our ketchup, condiments and sauces brands and we’re looking forward to bringing the agency’s expertise to bear with our frozen food brands,” said Brian Hansberry, vice president of frozen food marketing for Heinz North America, in a statement.