TBWA retains 36m Michelin task

TBWA Worldwide has retained the $60m (36m) European ad account for tyre manufacturer Michelin, after pitching against DDB and Publicis in Paris.

It is understood that TBWA’s London office was already involved in the pitch, although Michelin was unable to confirm this and TBWA would only confirm that it had won the account.

Michelin has spent some 1.5m in the past year on advertising in the UK (ACNielsen-MEAL), and has previously run television campaigns, though most of these are created in France.

Director of communications for the UK and Northern Europe Mark Carbery says: “The fact we retained TBWA against Publicis shows the company isn’t Franco-centric. TBWA is fairly new in its latest incarnation, and seems quite a young, buzzy agency.”

Run by the Michelin family, Michelin has a long-standing relationship with BDDP, which merged with sister Omnicom-owned network TBWA in May 1998.

It is unclear why the account was reviewed in the first place (MW March 11), although the merger may well have been a deciding factor.

Last year was the 100th anniversary of the creation of Bibendum, the Michelin man advertising icon, and next year is the centenary of the Red Michelin Guides to restaurants.

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