Pitch watch: What became of Droga5’s last clients?; Government picks agency for China free trade push; Tajer a mediapalooza winner

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

In today’s pitch watch we reveal what has happened to Droga5’s last clients; Henry Tajer’s first big win for Mediabrands globally; latest on Optus and Virgin Mobile; who the government picked for its $1.8m China Free Trade campaign while Pulse Communications goes to work on an egg.

Helloworld’s creative pitch

It seems Droga5’s decision to shut the doors of its Sydney office last week may have been aided by a particularly competitive pitch for its biggest remaining local client Helloworld.

helloworldThe travel company has been going through a tender to find an agency to push the brand, which was launched 18 months ago, to the next stage.

Droga was understood to be part of a four-way shootout which is believed to also feature independent agencies Joy and The Hallway and Tourism Australia’s agency Clemenger BBDO Sydney.

It is thought a decision is due imminently.

All agencies contacted declined to comment.

Another of Droga’s remaining clients was Netflix, however Mumbrella understands that while the agency worked on the streaming giant’s launch campaign, subsequent creative to promote new shows has come from the US.




There has been precious little movement locally in the eleven global pitches which have an impact in Australia as part of Mediapalooza, with agencies on tenterhooks for the decisions of companies like Mondelez, 21st Century Fox and Daimler/Mercedes.

One pitch which has seen movement over the weekend is Johnson & Johnson, which is moving its U.S. buying business back to UM’s J3 from OMD in the US.

That is be seen as the first major scalp for recently installed global Mediabrands CEO Henry Tajer  – and at $1bn a massive boost for any business.

Asked if there was any decision locally a spokesperson for Johnson & Johnson Pacific said the process for the $25m Australian account was “ongoing”.

Optus/Virgin Mobile

The biggest pitches locally at the moment are the Optus and Virgin Mobile tenders, which could see media, creative and PR duties for both the brands change hands.

It is understood there were a series of meetings last week with shortlisted agencies, but given the last pitch took ten months to resolve it is unclear how much longer the process is likely to take.

China free-trade offensive

The 20-agency shootout for the China Free Trade campaign was whittled down to a shortlist of three agencies – Ogilvy, The Works and 303 Lowe, with the latter understood to have been given the nod.

It is 303 Lowe will be tasked with creating a fast turnaround campaign to support the controversial deal which has drawn ire from unions, with spending on it understood to stand at around $24.6m and include roadshows across several Asian countries.

All agencies contacted had not responded to requests for comment at the time of publication.

Sling & Stone celebrates four wins:

PR agency Sling & Stone, previously known as Click PR, has won four new accounts as it celebrates its fifth birthday. The agency has picked up Domain, geospatial mapping and video analytics provider nearmap, online custom fashion retailer Shoes of Prey and Wellington, NZ.

“I’m incredibly proud of the team we have built, the great brands we partner with, and the scale we’ve been able to achieve,” Sling and Stone managing director Vuki Vujasinovic said in a statement.

“We have a different approach to PR, and our relentless focus helping challengers succeed through smart, creative campaigns has helped us grow and do great work.”

Pulse goes to work for the Egg

Pulse Communications has picked up the consumer PR account for The Australian Egg Corporation Limited following a pitch process.

David Mogford, program manager – marketing, at AECL, said in a statement: “Egg consumption has been growing consistently over the past few years, but to achieve even higher sales for our farmers, we needed a fresh approach. We genuinely believe eggs are unbeatable for breakfast and Pulse is the right agency to help us reinvent the image of eggs to our consumer, media, and health care professional audiences.”

“We are thrilled to be appointed as the AECL’s communications agency,” Pulse Group managing director Richard Brett said in a statement. “We’re excited by our campaign, which is a highly disruptive and innovative new way to challenge the myths that Australia has around eggs. We will present eggs in a different light, through creative and engaging social and earned media content, using new technology.”

10 Feet Tall wins Click Energy

Melbourne independent  10 feet tall will launch the spring campaign for Click Energy after winning the brand’s business in a pitch.

Chris Zondanos, general manager, sales and marketing at Click Energy, said, “The fast response and quality of work impressed us. We look forward to seeing the work come to life and generating some good results.”

The new work will start to break end September, early October.

Joseph Meseha, managing director at 10 feet tall said, “after conducting a brand audit for Click Energy, we were keen to show them our thinking. The project came up and gave us the opportunity, much sooner than we anticipated. We’re now keen to get it out and getting the numbers.”

Click Energy is one of several new wins for the agency over the last few weeks, including Dairy Australia and some significant new property development projects.

Alex Hayes, Miranda Ward and Nic Christensen


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