News Corp hands all media duties to MediaCom

Arvind Hickman
By Arvind Hickman | 9 December 2016
Damian Eales at the Come Together event 2016

MediaCom has taken full control of News Corp's media planning and buying after beating UM in a closed review to consolidate its digital and traditional media budgets, AdNews can reveal.

The account is currently split between MediaCom, which looks after traditional media, and UM, which manages digital. MediaCom's tenure as its sole media partner begins on 1 February 2017 and will run for three years.

“News Corp Australia has decided to consolidate to one media agency to deliver operational efficiencies to the business and I’m pleased to be continuing our relationship with MediaCom as that agency. I would like to thank UM for the excellent service it has provided News Corp to date,” News Corp Australia’s chief marketing officer Tony Phillips said.

Last year, News Corp's then group marketing manager Damian Eales (pictured) split the account after MediaCom tabled a proposal to handle traditional media. The suprise move meant that UM's role was reduced to digital media.

Eales, who now heads metro and regional newspapers at the group, has previously worked with MediaCom during his time at Westpac.

Phillips, who joined News Corp earlier this year, has a solid working relationship with UM after spending several years working with the agency when he was at Coles.

Aside from a boost to billings and morale, beating one of Sydney's leading media agencies to a blue chip client such as News Corp has added significance for MediaCom.

Under new leadership, the agency has spent the past year overhauling its operational structure and processes as it rebuilds its reputation in the wake of the misreporting scandal, which cost the agency several clients and staff. 

News Corp's vote of confidence indicates it is satisfied with the steps MediaCom is taking and the agency's level of service. It's also a timely confidence boost ahead of several reviews it is contesting.

After a rocky 2015, this year MediaCom has retained Carnival Cruises and picked up Sony PlayStation but lost Pharmacare, NRMA and VW in a global review.

The agency is eyeing new additions and is in the final stages of media reviews for Ikea and Mars.

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