MasterCard Taps R/GA for Global Digital Advertising Duties

Interpublic Agency Takes Over Majority of Work From McCann's MRM

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NEW YORK (AdAge.com) -- Interpublic Group of Cos.' R/GA has won the lion's share of Mastercard's global digital business, including U.S. responsibilities that were previously with sibling MRM, the digital unit of McCann Worldgroup, according to executives familiar with matter.

Before the global digital review, MRM handled interactive duties for the credit-card company in the U.S., Latin America and some European countries, including the U.K. MRM retains digital duties in Europe and is Interpublic's largest digital agency on that continent.

MRM and R/GA declined comment and referred calls to the client. MasterCard didn't return calls and an e-mail request for comment.

This summer, MasterCard began a review to consolidate more than 70 digital partners worldwide. The company spent $8.7 million in measured U.S. internet media in 2008 and $9.3 million in the first half this year, according to TNS Media Intelligence, though those figures don't include websites, viral video and its full range of digital initiatives. The Purchase, N.Y.-based marketer spent $431 million globally across all media in 2007, according to Ad Age's Global Marketers Report.

MasterCard digital agencies have included Australian independent Mercer Bell, and JWT relationship marketing division RMG Connect that's branded XM in Asia-Pacific.

McCann Erickson handles advertising for MasterCard in most markets including the U.S.

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