American Airlines Launches Global Agency Review

Carrier Has Been With McCann, TM For More Than Two Decades

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American Airlines
American Airlines Credit: Mark Elias/Bloomberg

American Airlines is putting its global account into review.

The carrier has been working with Interpublic's McCann Erickson and its agency TM in New York and Dallas for more than 20 years, an American Airlines spokeswoman said. McCann is invited to participate in the review, which is being handled by AAR.

"We remain deeply committed to American Airlines here and globally and will participate in the review," said a McCann spokeswoman in a statement.

American expects to select an agency in early October.

American Airlines and U.S. Airways merged in December 2013, though some operational issues are still being dealt with. Just a few days ago, the company announced that it is merging all U.S. Airways reservations into the American computer system, with a targeted completion date of Oct. 17. Other steps that still need to be completed include the combining of labor groups, the painting of U.S. Airways' planes to show American Airlines signage and the selection of uniforms. The $11 billion merger was first announced in February of 2013.

"As part of a broader objective since we entered our merger with US Airways, we have begun to do our due diligence to evaluate all major partners to ensure we are receiving competitive and effective service provisions" said the company in a statement. "This includes advertising and marketing plans. The competitive landscape of our industry and the advertising industry has changed since the last time we put our business out for bid. We want to ensure we align ourselves with the right agency who understands our goals as the world's largest airline and can provide the best resources and services to meet our needs globally."

The statement continued: "We have had a partnership with TM and McCann Worldgroup for more than 20 years, and value all of the great work they have done worldwide for American Airlines. McCann and its office in Dallas, TM Advertising, continues to be an excellent global partner for American, helping us with the recent "Going for Great" campaign launched in New York, Los Angeles and Chicago, as well as Europe, Asia and Latin America with local agency teams engaged on our business."

American Airlines' U.S. measured media spending plummeted last year, according to Kantar Media. In 2014 the company spent $27.8 million on U.S. measured media, down from $59.7 million in 2013.

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