Ogilvy Wins Global Philips Creative

Move Is a Blow to DDB, Which Held the Business Since 2003

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Ogilvy & Mather has picked up global creative duties for Philips after a review, according to people familiar with the matter.

Four shops contended for the business: Publicis Groupe 's Leo Burnett, WPP's Ogilvy & Mather and Omnicom siblings TBWA and DDB, the incumbent. Executives familiar with the review said that in recent weeks it came down to a shootout between TBWA and Ogilvy.

Miles Young, global CEO of WPP's Ogilvy, told Ad Age that although the process was global, it involved a presentation to Philips' U.S. clients. Ogilvy's New York office was involved in the final presentation and the work that was presented was done by U.S. top creative Steve Simpson, Gerry Human from London and Graham Fink from Shanghai. He described the pitch process as "exhaustive" and added that it "feels pretty good to have won the two big global pitches of the year," in reference to this review as well as the massive S.C. Johnson review. Ogilvy was one of the winners in that pitch; Omnicom Group's BBDO was the other. Other agencies involved either declined to coment or could not be immediately reached.

The loss of the business is a blow to DDB, who had been the lead creative agency on the business since 2003, after Philips consolidated its work with the Omnicom agency. DDB was also recently in the global Exxon review, in which the agency held on to its below-the-line fuels business.

The company held separate creative and media reviews. Last month the company split its $100 million-plus global media business between Havas' MPG and the incumbent, Aegis' Carat. In that review, Carat, which has worked with Philips for eight years on all of its main categories of business -- including health-care, lighting and lifestyle -- lost a major piece of its account to MPG.

The reviews came on the heels of executive turnover at Philips, including the April appointments of Frans van Houten as the company's CEO and Antonio Hidalgo as exec VP-chief technology officer of Philips Consumer Lifestyle, among others.

Philips spends about $40 million on measured media in the U.S., according to Kantar. It's believed, though, that the company spends the majority of its media budget abroad, and the combined global budget is more than $100 million.

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