Federal Government pitch requires winning agency to relocate to Western Sydney

Screen shot 2014-03-31 at 12.38.30 AM Noon update: This story was published on April Fool’s Day.

The winner of the Federal Government’s media account will be required to move its headquarters to Western Sydney, documents seen by Mumbrella reveal.

It is understood that revised tender documents informed the agencies that one of the requirements of the consolidated $137m media account would be that the agency was willing to move its offices to Parramatta or another part of Western Sydney.

The new requirement is part of a broad push by both Federal and State Governments to ensure those working for the government are connected to “ocker Aussies”.

A source close to the process told Mumbrella: “So far we’re not convinced that some of the people working on this pitch have ever met a middle Australian. All they seem to be interested in is craft beer and soy lattes.”

A further requirement is that every agency needs to pass a culture test. If more than one in three staff has an English accent or doesn’t know who Molly Meldrum is, the agency will be removed from the process. As part of this process Sam Kekovic has been drafted into the judging panel process as an arbiter for Australian culture.

Mumbrella understands that front runner UM has ruled itself out of the contest after being unable to get insurance for CEO Mat Baxter’s Ferrari to be parked anywhere beyond a five mile radius of Surry Hills.

However, a spokesman for independent agency TMS said that if it wasn’t too late, it wanted to join the tender process. “We’re in St Leonards, so this would be an improvement.”

OMD has chartered a Parramatta river boat to take senior staff on a fact-finding mission from its Pyrmont offices.

Meanwhile another unnamed agency chief is understood to have put a block booking on Parramatta’s premium tanning salon Orange.

Starcom’s chairman John Sintras is also understood to be practising for another part of the culture test, with senior executives challenged to skull a beer faster than former PM Bob Hawke.

Mumbrella understands that Mindshare is now a frontrunner to win the account because CEO Katie Rigg-Smith does a pilates class in Parramatta.


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