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VW hands $3bn global media business to PHD

VW hands $3bn global media business to PHD

Volkswagen has completed its long-running global media planning and buying review, appointing Omnicom Media Group’s PHD to handle the estimated $3bn account.

The appointment – believed to be the largest consolidated global win in history – follows a gruelling pitch process which has lasted over 12 months.

The German carmaker called the review as part of last year’s ‘Mediapalooza’, only 12 months after an announcement that it had retained WPP’s MediaCom as its international agency of record for a three-year period.

It ends an 18-year relationship with MediaCom, which first started working on the VW business in Germany in 1998. It is understood that IPG Mediabrands also pitched for the business.

Neither VW nor PHD could be reached for comment at the time of publishing.

However, insiders claim that the addition of VW globally – including its Audi, Skoda and Seat brands – will be “transformative” for PHD.

Speaking to M&M Global last month, PHD worldwide CEO Mike Cooper said the agency was thriving in part because of its ability to create a point of differentiation.

“I think the middle ground is a very dangerous place to be,” he said. “When we were first rolling out PHD as a network, we looked at the competition and thought there is no point in us trying to be a Mindshare, or a UM, or a Starcom. They are already very good at doing what they do.

“As a challenger brand, you need a different narrative to be able to communicate.”