Coca-Cola switches global marketing account to WPP in ‘unprecedented’ move

Coca-Cola has switched its global marketing account to WPP following a competitive pitch between IPG, Dentsu and Publicis Groupe.

It is understood WPP’s GroupM agency MediaCom will handle media in every market except Japan, with the account moving from Mediabrand’s UM in Australia.

Coca-Cola, one of the world’s biggest advertisers, said WPP, through its bespoke operation OpenX, will handle creative, media and data across its entire brand portfolio in more than 200 countries and territories.

Local MediaCom CEO, Yaron Farizon said: “This is a triumphant win for us both globally and locally, an incredible achievement for MediaCom and WPP. I couldn’t be prouder of each person who made this possible. Having hands-on experience on Coke from other markets, I’m so excited for our team here in Australia to work on this exceptional client. WPP stood out as a group of brilliant, talented, inquisitive, creative, and inclusive people that will help to drive transformation of The Coca-Cola Company business leveraging media, data and creative. We are over the moon and look forward to growing Coke’s business in AUNZ. Such an honour!.”

It described the depth of the partnership with WPP as “unprecedented for Coca-Cola” and said it expects the collaboration to be a “catalyst in the transformation of marketing effectiveness and efficiency”.

The win is another huge coup for WPP which last month raised its annual sales forecast.

In some positive news for Dentsu, the agency was named as complementary media partner in selected markets where it is deemed to have distinctive strengths.

IPG and Publicis meanwhile will join Coca-Cola’s agency roster in its open-source model which is expected to account for 33% of its marketing work.

Chief marketing officer Manolo Arroyo said the appointment of WPP and the move towards an integrated agency model will “transform and modernize marketing and innovation as key drivers of profitable growth”.

“Consumers respond to an entire experience – they don’t separate the message from the medium – and that’s why we’ve designed an agency model to be truly consumer-centric and silo-free,” he said.

“This model is about seamless integration of the power of big, bold ideas and creativity within experiences, amplified by media and data. It will enable us to create end-to-end experiences that are grounded in data-rich insights and optimized real-time, at scale, as we learn from consumers.”


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