Kodak media-buying biz follows creative to O&M

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On the heels of consolidating its consumer photography business at Ogilvy & Mather Worldwide, Eastman Kodak Co. is moving its $260 million media account to the agency as well. Media buying had been handled by Kodacom, a joint venture between O&M andsibling WPP Group agency J. Walter Thompson Co.


Bob Zach, named just last month as worldwide media director at Kodacom, will move to the same post at O&M.

Kodak late last week confirmed the move of its media account. The fate of that business had been left unclear earlier in the week when Kodak consolidated creative at O&M, cutting JWT from its roster after 67 years.

JWT executives had believed up until the end that the agency would continue to work on media; in fact the agency first learned of the move from outsiders, not from Kodak.

Kodak last fall split its $260 million global media business between the WPP Group agencies. JWT had responsibility for the U.S., Latin America and Asia/Pacific, while O&M handled media in most of Europe.

But after slowly siphoning creative assignments away from JWT, Kodak last week reassigned JWT's remaining $49.5 million assignments for film and one-time-use cameras to O&M.

A $40 million Kodak Gold campaign launched in the U.S. May 26 via JWT will end later this month. The campaign will move to Latin America and Europe as planned in July, but O&M will now oversee the migration.


O&M said the creative consolidation will make its job simpler.

"We can now have one plan for 1998, which is pretty cool," said Frank Schumacher, partner-management supervisor at O&M. "That's the exciting part of this whole situation."

Kodak Chief Marketing Officer Carl Gustin has clearly favored O&M over its sibling shop. O&M won Kodak's $15 million Digital & Applied Imaging business in December 1994, then scooped up the $50 million global brand account the next year.


Kodak dealt JWT a major blow last fall when the Advantix brand Advanced Photo System line--supported by a $56 million ad budget in the U.S.--was moved to O&M.

One question that remains is how Kodak agencies will be compensated. The agencies are said to have been operating without contracts since the end of last year because they cannot agree on terms with the marketer, according to one executive close to the situation.

Contributing: Pat Sloan.

Copyright June 1997, Crain Communications Inc.

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