Whole Foods Market Hires MediaCom for Media Planning, Buying

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Whole Foods Market has hired MediaCom to handle national media planning and buying, following a competitive review, according to people with knowledge of the matter.

Representatives from Whole Foods were not immediately available for comment, and MediaCom representatives declined to comment.

At least six agencies competed for the account, which is worth about $60 million-plus, and includes all aspects of media planning and buying, including search, social and data, according to people with knowledge of the matter. GSD&M previously handled the media business for Whole Foods. Representatives from the incumbent were not immediately available for comment.

Last fall, Whole Foods appointed Sam's Club's Marketing VP Sonya Gafsi Oblisk as global VP-marketing. In November, the grocery store chain said in its third-quarter earnings statement that it "is encouraged that its value and marketing efforts appear to be gaining traction with customers and believes it will see momentum as its sales-building initiatives are rolled out throughout the year." Whole Foods' total sales increased to $3.5 billion in Q3 of 2016 from $3.4 billion in Q3 2015, while comparable-store sales decreased 2.6% in the third quarter of 2016.

For fiscal year 2016, Whole Foods, which was founded in Austin, Texas, in 1978, saw sales of about $16 billion.

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