Sony holds agency talks on global ‘convergence’ brief

Japanese consumer electronics giant Sony is understood to be talking to agencies about a global campaign to unite the different parts of its business.

The company is thought to have approached several agency networks to pitch for a project based around the concept of convergence.

It is understood that it is being driven by senior staff at Sony, including chairman and chief executive Sir Howard Stringer. Sony Europe senior vice-president of communications David Patton is also thought to be involved.

It is not known whether the company’s pan-European agency Fallon is involved in the pitch, although it is thought that the project is a one-off and does not affect the agency’s hold on the main account. Fallon is the agency behind the award-winning “Balls” ad for Sony’s Bravia LCD TVs. It won the £70m pan-European account in 2002 following a pitch against incumbent Saatchi & Saatchi, Bartle Bogle Hegarty, Abbott Mead Vickers.BBDO, Wieden & Kennedy and Rapley Smith & Jones (MW November 14, 2002).

Fallon Minneapolis lost Sony’s $125m (£67m) US advertising business to McKinney & Silver last year but it does still work with the company on domestic projects in the US.

Convergence is one of the key challenges facing Stringer, with one insider saying he needs to “break down the individual silos across Sony”.

Pressure is mounting on Stringer, who was appointed to the top job 18 months ago, following further delays to its PlayStation 3 console. At the company’s annual general meeting in June, he faced criticism over the company’s stagnant share price and falling product quality.

No one at Sony or Fallon could be reached for comment as Marketing Week went to press.

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