Coles hands media to OMD, drops UM after 13 years

Rosie Baker
By Rosie Baker | 16 May 2016

Coles has dropped UM, its agency of 13 years, and handed its $48 million media account to OMD Melbourne after a lengthy pitch process.

OMD will take on the business from 1 July - the date the contract with UM runs out. Zenith had also been in the final three with much speculation in the market suggesting that the agency was the frontrunner. 

It's thought that the final decision was not made internally at Coles until today (16 May) with agencies being told this afternoon.

OMD Melbourne will be looking to staff up its team and it's thought a team of around 50 is needed to serivce the account.

The account includes Coles Supermarkets, Coles Financial Services, Coles Online, Coles Express, Liquorland, First Choice and Vintage Cellars. UM still handles the media for Kmart and Target, which are both owned by Coles parent Wesfarmers. Sister agency Initiative also handles Bunnings and Office Warehouse. None of these busineses were involved in the pitch. 

Coles marketing director George Dymond, says: “We are excited to join forces with the team at OMD to optimise Coles’ media planning and negotiations. OMD’s insights, audience understanding and integrated recommendations clearly demonstrated that they are a driven bunch who know the media landscape well and can leverage positive results for Coles.”

The supermarket thanked UM for its "unfailing support and dedication over the last 13 great years.”

Peter Horgan, OMD Australia CEO, added: “We are proud to be working with such a sophisticated client in George Dymond and the team at Coles. I am incredibly proud of the team, and this partnership underpins the consistency and depth of OMD's offering across our offices.”

Margie Reid, OMD Melbourne managing director, said: “OMD are thrilled at the opportunity to work with the Coles. Working with Coles over the past few months has demonstrated their vision and approach of creating true partners and working in collaboration. We can’t wait to get stuck into their business together.”

Speaking to AdNews in a follow-up interview, Horgan said: "We didn’t promise anything crazy" for Coles.


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