Kellogg’s appoints Zenith to media account

Kellogg’s pitch for its media account has drawn to a close, with the FMCG brand appointing Publicis Media’s Zenith to do its strategy, planning and buying, Mumbrella can reveal.

The pitch was marred by controversy with claims the brand had unrealistic expectations, and agencies being asked to agree to unfair payment terms. The appointment of Zenith marks the end of a 35-year relationship with Group M’s Mindshare.

Kellogg’s pitch has been in the spotlight

Mumbrella understands Mindshare ended the relationship with Kellogg’s and declined to partake in the pitch. It is also widely understood IPG Mediabrands and Omnicom agencies refused to partake in the pitch, with Initiative’s global CEO Mat Baxter taking to the stage at Mumbrella360 in June, calling out the process which was underway.

“Just in this market, right now, there is a pitch going on for a CPG [consumer packaged goods] client. The mandatory requirement to participate in that pitch, you’ve got to agree to 120-day payment terms and, if you don’t, you’re out. And I want to call out publicly [fellow media agencies] Omnicom, PHD, who took a stand with us on not participating in that pitch,” Baxter said at the time.

“The really good agencies have got to start saying no.”

These claims were vehemently denied by Kellogg’s director of marketing and corporate affairs for ANZ, Tamara Howe, who said Baxter’s statements, and some of the surrounding industry scuttlebutt, did not reflect the Kellogg’s process, or the value it places on its agency partners.

“I can’t speak for other clients, however Mat’s comments do not reflect the process at Kellogg ANZ. We get many requests to work on our business so I think a ‘pitch’ process provides a structured, fair opportunity,” Howe told Mumbrella earlier this month.

Howe: Agencies need to lean in to win business

“We typically shortlist between three and five agencies in our pitch process and tend to undergo two to three rounds. We take a collaborative approach where we’re also involved along the journey.”

And now, Howe says, as the brand’s 35-year relationship with Group M’s Mindshare draws to a close, she is excited to partner with Zenith.

“The Zenith team should be proud of the work they brought to the table,” Howe said in a statement to Mumbrella. “They are a great group of people, and we look forward to collaborating with them.”

Nickie Scriven, CEO of Zenith, also sung the brand’s praises.

“Throughout the process, the Kellogg’s marketing and procurement teams have been extremely engaged, and committed to investing in an open and collaborative relationship,” she said.

“We’re delighted to start this journey with Kellogg’s and to being a trusted business partner focused on growing their much-loved household brands.”

Jonny Cordony, Zenith’s general manager in Sydney, added: “At Zenith Sydney, we’re very excited to be working with Kellogg’s. I’m personally proud of the agency and the team who deserve a huge amount of recognition for the quality of work produced.”

Zenith will be undertaking the strategy, planning and buying for Kellogg’s brands including Corn Flakes, Just Right, Nutri-Grain, Special K, Coco Pops, All Bran, and Pringles.


Get the latest media and marketing industry news (and views) direct to your inbox.

Sign up to the free Mumbrella newsletter now.



Sign up to our free daily update to get the latest in media and marketing.