Wieden & Kennedy has been appointed to handle the £100m global business for Visa’s Fifa World Cup sponsorship. The appointment comes just days after rival Mastercard settled its long-running dispute with Fifa over the legitimacy of Visa’s sponsorship.
The agency has been handed the business following a nine-month pitch process, which was put on hold when Mastercard began legal proceedings against football’s governing body.
The review included all of the credit card company’s roster agencies Rainey Kelly Campbell Roalfe/Y&R, TBWAChiatDay, 180 Amsterdam and Saatchi & Saatchi London.
Wieden will now create global campaigns for ten Fifa World Cup events, including South Africa 2010, the Women’s World Cup, to be held in China in 2008, and the Under 20’s World Cup in Canada.
It was announced that Fifa would pay Mastercard £45m in exchange for the card payment company dropping its dispute. Mastercard had sponsored the tournament since 1990 and believed its latest contract, signed in 2002, gave it first refusal on partnering Fifa for the 2010 and 2014 World Cups.
A US judge found against Fifa last year and ordered the organisation to retain Mastercard as a sponsor until 2014, a ruling Fifa appealed. Mastercard global marketing officer Larry Flanagan said the settlement was a business decision and that the relationship between the two organisations had broken down beyond repair.