New Balance Consolidates With PHD for Global Account

Media Shop's New York Office to Handle Planing and Buying

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NEW YORK (Adage.com) -- Omnicom media agency PHD has grabbed its first global account since appointing a new worldwide CEO this October.

Footwear marketer New Balance has consolidated its global media operations with the agency after making PHD its North American media agency in October. The win brings the total billings handled by the agency from about $20 million to about $75 to $100 million, an executive familiar with the matter said.

PHD will now work on media planning and buying in international markets such as the U.K., France, China, Mexico, Canada, Germany and Japan, in addition to North America. The account will be run out of the agency's New York office.

"What we've been trying to do is to sort of bring [PHD] together as much more of a network," said Mike Cooper, the agency's worldwide CEO. "Winning global business is key for us." Mr. Cooper was brought in to the agency this fall to help ramp up PHD's global presence and pitch global accounts.

New Balance's hiring of a global network coincides with the marketer's recent pledge to double its sales by 2012. New Balance plans to triple spending behind a new marketing push that appeals to the dueling feelings of love and hate that running inspires. In a move reflective of this push, New Balance also hired global agency BBDO, PHD's Omnicom sibling agency, after ending its relationship with small independent shop Boathouse this fall.

In March, Christine Madigan, New Balance's director of global marketing and brand management, told Ad Age that, in testing, the new spots resonated best with high-school athletes and competitive athletes who tended to view running "as a punishment."
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