P&G China rejigs media arrangements for Starcom and MediaCom

A long review has concluded with Starcom retaining buying; MediaCom gets expanded duties.

CHINA - Concluding one of the worst-kept-secret media reviews in China, P&G has retained Starcom as AOR for media buying while awarding MediaCom an expanded assignment. 

In the three-month review, WPP’s MediaCom contested head-to-head with Publicis Groupe’s Starcom, which has been the FMCG giant’s main agency for non-TV media buying in the mainland since 2012.

The two incumbents remain in place, but with slightly different marching orders.

Starcom retained its spot as agency-of-record for buying, while Mediacom got an expanded assignment that includes media planning, SEM, branded entertainment, digital, JBPs (joint business partnerships) and ecommerce with Olay and SK-II for Greater China. 

Prior to this, Mediacom already worked with P&G on a proportion of P&G's media planning duties (about 40 percent), covering the haircare and shaving brands Pantene, Rejoice and Gillette. With the addition of the two skincare brands, it now handles roughly 70 percent of P&G's media planning.

Monitored billings for P&G in China reportedly amount to more than US$1 billion per year.

The new arrangements were understood to be fixed as of 1 July.

"In the US, P&G is moving to an end-to-end media solution," a source close to the matter toldCampaign Asia-Pacific. "It's a similar situation in China."

Both Starcom Greater China CEO Sapna Nemani and MediaCom China CEO Rupert McPetrie declined to comment and referred questions to the client, which confirmed the news. 

This article first appeared on campaignasia.com.

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