Whitbread is understood to have split its £12m media planning and buying business between ZenithOptimedia, which will handle the £9m Premier Inn account and PHD, which will handle its pubs and restaurants business.
The pitch was called by the leisure company earlier this summer just two years after it consolidated the £12m account into Starcom. The incumbent declined to repitch. It is thought that PHD will handles such as Beefeater and Costa Coffee.
The media appointment comes just weeks after Whitbread appointed RKCR/Y&R to handle the advertising account for Premier Inn. The agency is developing a campaign that aims to raise awareness of its rebrand from Premier Travel Inn. It is not clear if there was an incumbent for the advertising agency.
Catriona Lougher-Smith, head of brand marketing at Premier Inn, says: “This is a significant step for us, and our campaign will enable us to widen our appeal beyond our existing success in the business market.”