Sainsbury’s is understood to be gearing up for a review of its &£56m media buying and planning account, held by PHD.
No move will be made until Sainsbury’s has completed its advertising agency review. If the media review happens, which could be as late as next year, it will follow a similar process to the advertising review and may not lead to a full-blown pitch.
The supermarket has drawn up a list of seven creative advertising agencies with which “chemistry” meetings will be conducted. These are Bartle Bogle Hegarty, DDB London, Delaney Lund Knox Warren & Partners, J Walter Thompson, Leo Burnett, McCann Erickson London and TBWA/London.
Once these meetings have been held Sainsbury’s will decide whether to go to a pitch. If it decides to do so it will invite incumbent Abbott Mead Vickers.BBDO to join a pitch shortlist.
The media account has not been reviewed during the whole of the time that PHD has held the business – almost ten years.
Sainsbury’s director of brand communications Helen Buck is overseeing the advertising review. If a pitch goes ahead, chief executive Justin King and marketing director Stephen Nelson are expected to have some input in it.
The review has triggered further speculation that the supermarket spokesman Jamie Oliver could be axed from Sainsbury’s advertising together with the tagline “Making Life Taste Better”.