Omnicom retains UKTV's £15m media account with expanded five-agency deal

UKTV has agreed a potentially pioneering deal with Omnicom Media Group that will see five agencies work together on the broadcaster's estimated £15m media account.

OMG’s Rocket, which has handled media for UKTV since 2008, has retained the account after a competitive pitch.

Rocket saw off several rivals, including Bountiful Cow and Total Media, in the review, which was managed by ISBA and Ebiquity.

UKTV, the owner of channels such as Dave, W and Good Food, is set to deepen its relationship with OMG as it will provide a much broader suite of services including data, mobile and marketing for the first time.

Annalect, OMG Programmatic, Fuse and Mobile 5 are the other OMG agencies that will work with Rocket, which will lead the account.

OMG’s expanded deal will start on a pilot basis. A sixth agency, Talon Outdoor, in which Omnicom had a minority stake until recently, is also part of the cross-agency relationship with UKTV.

Zoe Clapp, the chief marketing and communications officer of UKTV, said it made sense to construct what she called a "bespoke", "future-facing" media deal with OMG, particularly as the broadcaster is now handling its advertising and marketing creative in-house.

Darren Childs, the chief executive of UKTV, and Clapp decided they would no longer retain an external ad agency and would beef up in-house creative shop UKTV Creative earlier this year.

They are also keen to boost the broadcaster’s digital and data capabilities to support its on-demand service, UKTV Play, as viewing shifts away from live broadcasting.

It is thought UKTV plans to increase its media spend on video, including TV, and mobile in future.

UKTV made on-demand viewing a key part of its new ad sales contract with Channel 4 and its new carriage deal with Sky – both of which were agreed earlier this year.

Alasdair Weddell, UKTV’s director of media, who oversaw the review, said Rocket won because it "transformed their approach to meet UKTV’s new ambitions" in response to the broadcaster’s changing media strategy.

Mark Girling, chief executive of Rocket, said: "The review has given us a great opportunity to assess how the needs of progressive clients such as UKTV have changed, and create an exciting new resource within OMG UK to deliver on those needs."

UKTV has performed strongly in recent years, posting record revenues and profits last year, as investment in original programming has boosted audiences.

The broadcaster now has a tenth of all commercial impacts in British commercial TV, up 40% since 2010, 

BBC Worldwide and Scripps jointly own UKTV. Scripps was bought by rival US network Discovery last month but the deal has yet to complete.


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