American Express is reviewing its estimated $600m (&£342m) global planning and buying with WPP Group-owned MindShare.
This will come as a big blow to the network, which has handled the advertising account for Amex since 1962. MindShare was appointed to handle the global media planning and buying five years ago.
Ogilvy & Mather (O&M) handles the global creative business, which is not under review. Executive vice-president of global advertising and brand management John Hayes will oversee the review.
Media planning and buying in the UK is not up for pitch. It is handled by Carat. In the UK, the business is worth &£15m.
Amex’s media spend is $542m (&£309m) in the US market alone. This summer the company launched a global press campaign promoting its consumer products. The campaign used the strapline: “Long Live Dreams” and highlighted Amex’s financial and travel services, including credit cards, insurance and traveller’s cheques. O&M created the campaign.
The agency is also known for its campaign, which used celebrities such as Lennox Lewis, Kate Beckinsale, Jason Flemyng and Sir Alex Ferguson to support the launch of Amex charge card business in the UK in 1999.