Marks & Spencer has invited creative agencies to pitch for its entire advertising business, worth an estimated &£15m. The pitch will be followed by a review of its media buying and planning.
Roster agencies BMP DDB and Bartle Bogle Hegarty have been invited to pitch for the account alongside several other big-name agencies. A final shortlist will be announced in the next two months.
One source suggests Safeway incumbent Bates UK, J Walter Thompson, which handles Boots, and Abbott Mead Vickers.BBDO – which looks after Sainsbury’s press and regional accounts – are also in discussion with M&S about the business. But JWT have denied it is talking to the retailer, and AMV and Bates were unavailable for comment as Marketing Week went to press.
The creative pitch, which is expected to be completed before the end of May, will be managed by corporate marketing executive Matthew Chambers. It will precede a review of media buying and planning, currently handled by BMP.OMD and Optimedia. The media business is also expected to be consolidated.
M&S marketing director Alan McWalter called the reviews after sanctioning plans to merge the company’s food and clothing marketing budgets – worth &£20m – for the first time.