AANA broadens media agency probe

By Paul McIntyre | 20 May 2011
John Sintras.

EXCLUSIVE: An advertiser push for more transparency and disclosure from media agencies in their dealings with media owners has been broadened to encompass other agency sectors.

Suggestions that Australian Association of National Advertisers (AANA) board member and chief executive of Starcom MediaVest, John Sintras, successfully “buried” the development of a “media charter” designed to create specific disclosure guidelines for media agencies in their arrangements with media companies, has been rejected by both the AANA and Sintras.

“It’s not off the agenda,” Sintras told AdNews. “What is on the agenda is for an initiative to cover all [agency] suppliers. As far as I’m aware it’s been parked for further discussion at the AANA strategy day next month. Any charter, from my point of view, should be considered for all marketing supplier relationships. Media is only one part of it. What was accepted [by the AANA board] is that it’s an important issue and should be part of the strategic planning day scheduled for next month. That’s the next step.”

The AANA initially approached the Media Federation of Australia (MFA) to endorse a media charter using the World Federation of Advertisers’ code as a starting point (AdNews, 2 March, page 2). The MFA has been reluctant to back the initiative.

It comes as media owners privately express concerns about the rise in backroom deals by media agencies to link spending allocations
to the take-up by media owners of paid media agency services. Such deals can equate to 2-5% of agency spending volumes with individual media suppliers.

For the full story, read today's AdNews.

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