Pitch Watch: Vodafone moves media; Oporto/Red Rooster in play; Hipages appoints creative

Mumbrella casts an eye over the major media, creative and public relations pitches at play in market.

In today’s wrap up: Vodafone moves media; Quick Service Restaurants (formalised media pitch); HiPages(creative win).

Vodafone appoints GroupM its media agency in global realignment 

Vodafone has confirmed it will move agencies, shifting its $20m media account from independent Bohemia to GroupM as part of a global alignment strategy.

Australia was the only market outside of the GroupM arrangement and the realignment sees the holding group establish a dedicated ‘Team Red’ offering to handle its media buying.

Vodafone chief marketing officer, Loo Fun Chee, thanked Bohemia for its work over the past four years.

“Bohemia has been an instrumental partner in helping us tell our turnaround story. We thank it for its work during that time, including our brand relaunch and, most recently, Vodafone’s network demonstration partnerships with Nova, Channel 7 and Prime,” said Chee.

“We saw an opportunity to leverage WPP GroupM Media’s solid understanding of our global business as we enter this exciting new period of growth. We look forward to working with fellow WPP GroupM agency in the future,” she said.

Bohemia’s managing partner, Brett Dawson, said while the agency was disappointed with the decision it was proud of what it had done for the brand. 

“We are very proud of Bohemia’s significant contribution to driving re-appraisal of the Vodafone brand in Australia,” he said.

“We have partnered with Vodafone for more than four years, through the company’s turnaround. We have thrived on this challenge and our work has delivered demonstrable results, achieving both local and global recognition. I would like to take this opportunity to thank the Bohemia team for its passion and dedication, the Vodafone team for its trust, and the numerous media partners who have helped us output this work along the way.” 

News of the Vodafone move emerged earlier this month and came hot on the heels of the loss of Bohemia’s biggest client, Lion – alcohol and beverages.

Group M CEO AUNZ Mark Lollback said GroupM’s Team Red already has significant experience overseas and that they would look to take this into the Australian market. 

“Bohemia has established a solid platform for growth and is pleased that the account remains within the broader WPP AUNZ group,” he said.
Red Rooster Oporto

Quick Service Restaurants calls media review, following creative review

Bohemia is also set to defend its Quick Service Restaurants (QSR) account, with the owners of Red Rooster, Oporto and Chicken Treat calling its tri-yearly review of media.

The decision to call the pitch comes after the private equity-owned business recently pitched its creative agency, moving from Naked to new creative agency, Hard Boiled which Mumbrella understands will be headed up by Johnny Lambert.

Comment is being sought from Quick Service Restaurants but it is understood that most of the major agency groups will be participating in the pitch with Enth Degree running the process.

All agencies declined to comment. Nielsen puts the value of the QSR accounts at $5.9m for Red Rooster and $1.4m for Oporto.

HipagesHipages appoints creative agency 

Online tradie marketplace Hipages has appointed VCCP Sydney as its creative agency following a creative pitch.

Tracy Richardson, chief marketing officer at Hipages, said: “We went to market looking for a crackerjack creative agency and we were wowed by VCCP. Their pitch gave us great insight into the thinking, processes, team dynamics, leadership and fit with Hipages. And, critically, the horsepower of the creative engine underpinning their work.

“VCCP demonstrated an unnatural knack to nail our tone of voice, unpack insights, extract every ounce of delight from every concept they presented. They just seem to get us, to the bone,” said Richardson.

Commenting on the win, David Kennedy-Cosgrove, managing partner, VCCP Sydney, said: “We bonded over a shared understanding of how digital service brands work to disrupt the market for the betterment of the consumer. Tech inevitably makes life simpler and more connected, and Hipages is leading the charge to simplify the way Australians and tradies alike do business together.”

1 Cover1Cover Travel Insurance appoints Yolo

Independent creative agency YOLO has won the 1Cover Travel Insurance account.

The appointment was made without a pitch and with no incumbent agency.

Paul Fenton, creative partner at YOLO, added: “1Cover Travel Insurance was the first piece of business that Justine and I pitched for when we set YOLO up four years ago (we didn’t win it). We thought Eddie was a top fella and we were impressed with the way 1Cover operates and knew it was a business that we would really love to work with.

“Eventually he relented to our constant pestering and decided once and for all to not call security when we wouldn’t leave his office. So we unchained ourselves from their reception desk, sat down and talked about working together.”


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