Qantas $20m media pitch sees four agencies line up

QantasFour agencies will face off for the media account of national airline Qantas, Mumbrella can reveal.

It is understood that the agencies involved in the pitch are incumbent ZenithOptimedia who will face off against a field of three consisting of independent Bohemia, Omnicom’s OMD who went head to head with ZO in 2012 for the account, and Group M’s Maxus who currently holds the media account for sister airline Jetstar.

Mumbrella revealed the media pitch for the account, which according to Nielsen, in the 12 months to August saw the airline spent a total of $34.5m on advertising however, this figure includes $15m spent by Jetstar, leaving the value of the Qantas media account at just under $20m.

All agencies contacted declined to comment on the pitch however, the field of competitors is likely to make Qantas one of more competitive pitches of 2014 with Bohemia on a hot streak in the last 12 months, winning major accounts Vodafone and Lion, while OMD is thought to a strong contender given its final placing in the last pitch and Maxus in a prime position with Jetstar, given its streamlining of its marketing operations which have seen it shed 40 per cent of its broader marketing team.

The airline had said it will not be commenting on the process until there is a decision. “Qantas is reviewing its current media planning and buying arrangements,” said a spokesman for the airline on the announcement of the pitch.

“There are several agencies invited to be part of this process, including the incumbent, and we expect an outcome of the review by the end of the year.”

As Mumbrella revealed last month, the airline recently took its digital media in-house with the launch of Red Planet a new play from its loyalty business which is aiming to sign up other businesses to use data from the Frequent Flyer program in targeted digital advertising.

In recent weeks industry insiders have also suggested Qantas has been talking to non-rostered creative agencies about the troubled airline’s creative work, as it looks to bounce back from heavy losses in the last financial year.

Droga5 is the lead agency on the brand, but Ted Horton’s Big Red agency, which handles Coles’ advertising, has produced a recent round of work spruiking sales despite not being on the 2012 roster.

Nic Christensen


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