TUI Travel widely tipped to consolidate media account

TUI Travel, the holiday company formed from the merger of TUI and First Choice Holidays, is reviewing its £25m media planning and buying account.

The travel company is expected to consolidate the account and is understood to have asked Walker Media, the incumbent on the First Choice account, and Media Planning Group, which handles the TUI brands, to pitch for the business alongside a number of undisclosed agencies.

Tim Williamson, TUI product and marketing director, will oversee the review. Williamson was promoted to the top marketing role for the merged group in September over Thomson chief marketer, Andrew Rayner, who has since left the company.

Williamson has also consolidated TUI’s advertising account into Beattie McGuinness Bungay following a pitch against Krow. BMB was appointed to handle First Choice’s advertising in September 2005 while Krow won the TUI business in November last year from DDB London.

TUI Group, owner of Thomson, merged its tourism operations with UK rival First Choice Holidays earlier this year to form TUI Travel.

The group’s brands include Crystal Holidays and Portland Holidays, as well as the online hotel booking brand LateRooms, which BMB picked up last month without a pitch (MW November 15).

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