Wells Fargo Looks To Consolidate Media Shops

Financial Company Review Pits UM Against OMD

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Wells Fargo is in the midst of a review as it aims to consolidate its media- agency business.

"As media channels continue to converge and the lines between digital and offline blur, we've decided to undergo a media consolidation initiative to increase the integration and effectiveness of our channel plans to ensure channels are connected when appropriate and work together to reflect consumer behavior," said a Wells Fargo spokeswoman in an e-mail.

A decision is expected in late April.

"We are proud of our work with our current agencies, UM and OMD, as they understand our needs and support our culture," she added. "We're consolidating media planning and buying through one of our primary partners, Omnicom (OMD) or IPG (UM)."

The move comes almost a year after Wells Fargo replaced longtime creative agency DDB with its Omnicom sibling shop BBDO after a review. At the time, the company said MRM will continue to lead digital creative, while OMD and UM will continue to serve as media agencies. Omnicom supports traditional media, and UM has handled digital media.

Wells Fargo is the 70th largest advertiser in the U.S., spending a total of $610 million in 2013 on advertising and promotion, according to its 10-K. The company spent $170 million in U.S. measured media in 2013, according to the Ad Age DataCenter, with more than half devoted to network TV, cable TV and digital display.

Wells Fargo & Co. is the product of the 1998 merger of Minneapolis-based Norwest Corp. and the former Wells Fargo & Co. Wells Fargo in January 2009 completed its merger with Wachovia.

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