WPP poised to win Walgreens Boots Alliance global accounts in $600M coup

No word yet on which WPP agencies will work on the account.

WPP is poised to land Walgreens Boots Alliance's media and creative accounts in an estimated $600 million global coup.

The pharmacy giant, which runs the Walgreens chains in the US and Boots' branches in the UK, spends about $600 million a year on advertising.

Sources say a deal has been brokered, but it was not clear which WPP agencies will work on Walgreens Boots Alliance or if the company will retain some of its existing agencies as Campaign went to press.

A spokesman for Walgreens Boots Alliance declined to offer any comment or guidance.

Industry sources have been speculating for months that Walgreens Boots Alliance’s business was "in play."

Walgreens appointed OMD for media in the US in 2013, a year before the chain merged with Boots. Boots has used Omnicom's OMD UK for media in the UK since 2008.

Omnicom's GSD&M is the US creative agency of record, while independent shop Mother has been the UK creative agency for Boots since 2003

Walgreens Boots Alliance spent $598 million on global advertising in its most recent financial year, according to a stock market filing, up from $491 million in 2015 and $265 million in 2014 when the group was smaller.

A win for WPP would be a boon for the world’s biggest ad group, which has suffered a string of major media account losses, including Volkswagen globally and AT&T in the US, last year.

WPP referred inquiries to Walgreens Boots Alliance.

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