Codemasters shifts 5m brief to Target

Target Media has scooped the 5m UK media planning and buying account for videogames publisher Codemasters from Universal McCann, just nine months after the agency was handed the business (MW January 4).

CodemastersTarget Media has scooped the £5m UK media planning and buying account for videogames publisher Codemasters from Universal McCann, just nine months after the agency was handed the business (MW January 4).

The UK videogames company says it decided to move the business because Universal lacked experience of the games industry.

A company spokesman says: “We were looking for an agency with the necessary experience for the high-profile games launches planned over the coming months and next year. Universal is certainly building up that experience, but we need it now.”

Target Media focus on buying in specialist arenas, such as digital, with clients including Play.com and Konami Games. The agency has previously worked with Codemasters and was appointed as its agency of record for planning and buying in 2000.

The spokesman says the agency will start work on the account from October and that the business may be repitched next year, as the company is gearing up to increase its ad spend for a raft of high-profile launches, including the launch of a game based on horror writer Clive Barker’s Jericho.

The videogames publisher is also working on producing a film based on the game, which is being produced in collaboration with the author.

In a separate move, the games publisher has decided to “pull all advertising that it can” promoting its Colin McRae games, the most recent of which launched for the PlayStation 3 last week.

The company, which had worked with McRae for over ten years, says it is talking to his family to decide whether profits from the franchise should go to charity and, if so, which one will benefit.

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