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Uber Set to Name MediaCom to Handle North American Media

By Published on .

People enter the Uber Technologies Inc. headquarters building in San Francisco, California, U.S., on Wednesday, June 21, 2017.
People enter the Uber Technologies Inc. headquarters building in San Francisco, California, U.S., on Wednesday, June 21, 2017. Credit: David Paul Morris/Bloomberg

MediaCom is poised to win media duties for Uber in North America, according to people with knowledge of the matter.

Most recently, Uber worked with Interpublic Group of Cos.' Initiative in some of its media markets including North America. An Initiative spokesperson said in October the agency would "not be participating in any review that Uber calls."

In October, Ad Age reported the brand was set to hire MDC Partners' 72andSunny as its global creative agency.

GroupM's MediaCom referred comment to the client. Uber declined to comment.

MediaCom's wins this year also included Peugeot-Citroen owner PSA Group, Richemont and Whole Foods.

It's been a roller-coaster year for mammoth rideshare company Uber. After numerous allegations of harassment and discrimination at the company, founder and CEO Travis Kalanick resigned following a shareholder revolt in June. Also earlier this year, the U.S. Department of Justice reportedly began a criminal investigation into Uber's use of software to help drivers evade authorities.

The tech company's hiring of Bozoma Saint John, former Apple Music head of global consumer marketing, as its chief brand officer in July seemed to signal a commitment to repair its image. Saint John debuted her first big marketing move in October with an NBA-themed national ad campaign.

Uber has also recently worked with Dentsu Aegis Network-owned Fetch Media — the tech company filed a lawsuit against the agency in September, claiming that Fetch improperly billed Uber for "fake" online ads and took credit for app downloads it had nothing to do with. Shortly after, Fetch claimed it had terminated its relationship with Uber due to non-payment. The agency said this week it no longer works with Uber.

Uber Technologies Inc. spent an estimated $72 million in measured media in the U.S. in 2016, according to Kantar Media.

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