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Virgin Atlantic Moves Media Account to OMD

$30M Global Business Consolidates, Moves From Mediaedge:cia

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NEW YORK (AdAge.com) -- As part of a global consolidation of its marketing and media accounts, Virgin Atlantic has awarded its $30 million-plus traditional and digital global media business to Omnicom Group's OMD.

Credit: Virgin Atlantic
The win for Omnicom is its third new global account in less than a month and also marks the second piece of business the agency has obtained during that time, without a formal review, from WPP's Mediaedge:cia, which ran media for the airline in the U.S.

The airline also consolidated its $65 million global ad account with Rainey Kelly Campbell Roalfe/ Y&R. GyroHSR will handle Virgin's global direct-marketing work going forward.

OMD and RKCR/Y&R both previously held the media and creative accounts, respectively, in the U.K., Virgin's biggest market. The consolidation effort was initiated from Virgin's headquarters there.

The U.S. portion of the media business is estimated to be worth $5 million to $10 million.

Brand consistency
Insiders said the account will be run out of OMD's London and New York offices and that the agency is set to begin work on the business after Labor Day.

In a statement, Paul Dickinson, director-sales and marketing at Virgin Atlantic, said the consolidation was done in the hope of developing better brand consistency around the globe.

"We have been very well supported by local agencies around the world for some years," Mr. Dickinson said. "But [we] believe the time is right to focus our strategy as we plan for a new phase of growth."

Earlier last month, OMD took Monster's global media-planning and -buying account without a review, and just last week it was awarded telecom giant Vodafone's $1 billion-plus global media-buying account in 19 regions, including the Czech Republic, Germany, Hungary, Italy and Spain -- all regions where they previously held the business -- as well as regions in which they weren't managing the business, such as the U.K., Australia, India, Greece, Ireland and South Africa.

OMD referred calls to the client, and Virgin Atlantic did not return calls before deadline.

Lee Doyle, North American CEO of Mediaedge:cia, said: "After two years of great collaboration, MEC and Virgin Atlantic have parted ways as the result of a global consolidation to the U.K. MEC is proud of our work with Virgin Atlantic."

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