Volvo will keep its UK advertising business with Abbott Mead Vickers.BBDO, in spite of Chrysler’s decision to move its entire £1.25bn global advertising business into BBDO.
Volvo regional communications manager Bernard Bradley says: “We have been aware of the pitch and its outcome, but as far as we are concerned AMV will not have any direct involvement with the [Chrysler] business in the UK.”
BBDO has a separate agency, called PentaMark, set up in 1998 exclusively for the Chrysler business. It is understood that this will now have an operation in the UK where the business will be transferred from Banks Hoggins O’Shea/FCB.
The move is a blow to True North, FCB’s parent company which loses about $140m (£96m) in annual revenue. The company could now be forced into merging with another group such as Cordiant Communications.
True North chief executive David Bell refused to comment on speculation about any mergers or takeovers but added: “the management [of True North] could be open to opportunities.”
Bell also added that True North may be able to gain a new automotive client, on the back of the company’s experience with Chrysler. He said if this was the case, “it will be something that happens very quickly”.
Media buying in the US was split between BBDO and True North. This will now be handled by BBDO. Media for the rest of the world – excluding Germany – for the combined Daimler Chrysler business is handled by DCMS – a joint venture between Bozell and CIA.
Chris Ingram, chairman of Tempus, the parent company of CIA, confirmed that this arrangement is unaffected.