Agencies chase 17m Royal Mail

The Royal Mail is believed to be putting its 17m media buying account up for a statutory review when the Media Centre’s three-year contract runs out at the end of October.

Agencies keen to pitch for the business alongside the Media Centre include the media departments of the full-service agencies which pitched unsuccessfully for the creative account last month – O&M Media, Leo Burnett and BMP DDB Needham.

There were no media presentations made during the creative pitches, but at least two media departments have started researching the business. Also likely to feature on any pitch list is Zenith, whose network partner Bates Dorland was awarded the creative account two weeks ago.

However, one Media Centre source says the statutory review need not involve any other agencies and the Royal Mail says it has “no immediate plans” to change its arrangements.

The business is expected to increase in value in its second year to nearer 30m. The now more commercially minded Royal Mail plans to take on competition from faxes, e-mail and business delivery companies.

– United Biscuits has shortlisted four agencies for its 18m media centralisation pitches. Incumbents Leo Burnett and Optimedia have been joined by Zenith and BMP DDB Needham. The pitches are expected to be completed by the end of September.

Incumbent, MediaCom, is unable to pitch because of a potential clash with its Mars business, while John Ayling & Associates has previously handled only Derwent Valley Foods, the smallest part of the business.

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