Unilever confirms $3.3bn media roster

Luis Di Como: executive vice-president of global media at Unilever
Luis Di Como: executive vice-president of global media at Unilever

FMCG giant said new agency set-up will support new 'Get on the frontline' marketing philosophy.

Unilever, which owns the Dove, Ben & Jerry's and Marmite brands, has confirmed its global roster of agencies following a $3.3bn global media pitch.

WPP's Mindshare retained the US, UK and Ireland, Netherlands and Belgium, the Nordics, Italy, Eastern Europe, South Asia (India, Pakistan, Bangladesh, Sri Lanka) and Southeast Asia (Indonesia, Philippines, Thailand, Vietnam).

It also handles China (excluding Hong Kong and Taiwan), after a review last year.

Omnicom’s PHD won Austria, Germany, Switzerland and Canada from WPP, and North Africa and the Middle East at the expense of incumbent Interpublic.

PHD retained Australia, New Zealand, Hong Kong and Taiwan.

Havas Media won France and Spain, which WPP previously held. 

IPG’s Initiative retained Russia, Ukraine, Belarus and Greece, and has business in Latin America (which was not part of the pitch).

Unilever's Japanese media is handled by Asatsu-DK (and was not part of the review).

It is understood that the Turkey pitch has not concluded. 

Yesterday, Campaign US revealed that WPP and Mindshare were the major winners of the review, with the Group M agency retaining the major US and UK markets, and large parts of Europe and Asia. 

Europe made up about 22% of sales, the Americas 32%, and the rest of the world (including Asia-Pacific, Africa and the Middle East) 46%, according to Unilever’s 2020 annual report.

Luis Di Como, executive vice-president of global media at Unilever, said: "The rapid digitisation of consumer lives, accelerated even further by the Covid pandemic, has driven the convergence of media, commerce, entertainment and shopping, offering exciting opportunities for our brands.

"In this context, it's great to be continuing our journey with existing and new partners, many of whom have worked with us collaboratively over many years."

Unilever said the agencies would support Unilever's new marketing philosophy for brands to "Get on the frontline", which means less focus on the top and bottom line, and more on the frontline of society.

This involves three principles: Get Real – using data and empathy to solve real life problems; Do Good – ensuring brand purpose spurs positive change for people and planet; and Be Unmissable – ensuring brands stand out in culture.

Unilever’s full media agency roster:

Mindshare (WPP) 

US, UK and Ireland, Netherlands and Belgium, Nordics, Italy, Eastern Europe, South Asia India, Pakistan, Bangladesh, Sri Lanka), Southeast Asia (Indonesia, Philippines, Thailand, Vietnam), China (excluding Hong Kong and Taiwan)   

OMG (Omnicom Group) 

Canada, Germany, Austria and Switzerland, Middle East, Africa, Australia and New Zealand, Hong Kong and Taiwan 

IPG (Interpublic) 

Russia, Ukraine and Belarus, Latin America , Greece  

Havas Media (Havas) 

France, Spain,



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