HSBC chooses PHD after global media review

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HSBC's The Making of a Living River ad
HSBC's The Making of a Living River ad Credit: HSBC

British banking and financial services company HSBC has chosen Omnicom's PHD to handle global media following a review.

The incumbent was GroupM's Mindshare. ID Comms, the U.K.-based media consulting company, handled the pitch.

PHD referred requests for comment to the client.

"We have selected PHD as our preferred Media Planning and Buying Supplier as they demonstrated strong strategic skills and advanced digital transformation capabilities," Leanne Cutts, group head of marketing at HSBC, said in an emailed statement. "In a complex media and communications marketplace, PHD's overall approach stood out as being forward thinking, yet straightforward and pragmatic."

HSBC last year named Cutts, a former Mondelez International executive, as its new group head of marketing.

The company said in January that it was evaluating marketing service suppliers "as part of (its) commitment to the ongoing development of HSBC's media and marketing arrangements."

Ad Age Datacenter estimates 2016 worldwide measured-media spending for HSBC at about $150 million. That includes U.S. measured-media spending of about $28.5 million that year, according to Kantar Media. However, some estimates say the company's account is substantially larger, at around $400 million.

The decision is a blow for WPP, which is currently working to defend some of its major clients, including Ford — which the holding company's Global Team Blue handles — as well as Mars, Shell and GlaxoSmithKline.

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