Starcom prevailed in a review that also included WPP Group's MindShare, which handled media duties in about 60 markets, including the U.S., where spending is valued at about $152 million, according to TNS Media Intelligence. Korean-headquartered ad agency Cheil Communications also handles a large portion of Samsung's media duties.
The review comes two years after Samsung replaced WPP's Berlin Cameron and JWT on creative and branding responsibilities after less than year on the job. Publicis' Leo Burnett Worldwide took over those businesses. At the time, it was said that Samsung was unhappy with some aspects of the relationship with WPP and that the companies couldn't agree on compensation.
Samsung has been known as a challenging account to work with because of internal politics and a structure that requires outside agencies to work with Cheil Communications, a local advertising agency that handles much of Samsung's marketing.
Agency spokespeople either couldn't be reached for comment or referred calls to Samsung. A Samsung representative couldn't immediately be reached for comment.