O’Neill’s hunts media agency to work on £2m business

Six Continents Retail, part of the hotel and leisure group formerly known as Bass, is understood to be in talks with media agencies about the £2m buying and planning account for O’Neill’s, its Irish pub and restaurant chain.

The incumbent is MindShare, which handles the media for all of Six Continents’ other retail businesses, including Harvester, Toby Inns & Restaurants and Vintage Inn Pubs.

MindShare was appointed to handle the retail business two years ago, after a three-way pitch against Optimedia and the incumbent BBJ Media. Publicis handles the creative work in the UK.

Six Continents’ Inter-Continental hotel chain recently appointed Leagas Delaney to handle its £10m global creative account. The agency beat M&C Saatchi and Leo Burnett in a three-way pitch, which was handled by the AAR.

Early this year, Mediaedge:CIA picked up the $20m (£14m) media task for Six Continents hotels in the US. Six Continents Hotels brands include Holiday Inn, Holiday Inn Express, Inter-Continental and Crowne Plaza.

Six Continents sold off its Bass Brewers subsidiary (which included Carling, Caffrey’s and Bass Ale brands) to rival Interbrew in 2000 as it shifted focus to pubs.

O’Neill’s launched a £1m through-the-line push in October last year to raise its brand profile during the winter months and to increase footfall in the chain’s pubs during the Christmas period.

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