Australian airline Qantas made it official today, moving its estimated $35 million international ad account to the London-based New Saatchi Agency from Saatchi & Saatchi Advertising. This follows yesterday's decision by British Airways, which owns 25% of Qantas, to move its $96 million global ad business from Saatchi to New Saatchi. Qantas marketing executives flew to London last week to review with British Airways the final pitches by the four competing agencies: New Saatchi, Saatchi & Saatchi, J. Walter Thompson Co. and Bartle Bogle Hegarty
. Qantas said there are "valuable synergies and potential cost benefits" for BA and Qantas in using the same agency.
Qantas said it is "satisfied with the arrangements" by New Saatchi for their operations in Australia and Asia. What these arrangements are is unclear. New Saatchi founder Maurice Saatchi and senior executive Bill Muirhead will visit Sydney this month to make public details of its plans for Oceania and Asia.