MediaCom faces losing at least one major client

Rosie Baker
By Rosie Baker | 9 March 2015

MediaCom could be on the brink of losing a further major client following the findings of the EY audit into the manipulation of TV campaign reporting.

While the agency is not officially under review by any clients, and has not been put on notice, Mark Pejic, CEO of MediaCom, told AdNews that there is one client that may yet move its business out of MediaCom.

“We haven’t been put on notice with anyone but I think it’s a possibility,” he said.

Although Pejic and GroupM chairman John Steedman would not identify the client in question, it is thought the business could be IAG – one of the affected brands named in December.

IAG declined to comment specifically, but a spokesperson for the company told AdNews it is “looking at its options” but that it was too early to provide any more information.

Yum! Brands, the third of the brands identified in November as having suffered false reporting on its accounts, however, reiterated its commitment to the agency and its support of how it has conducted the investigation.

Nikki Lawson, Yum! Brands chief marketing and development officer, told AdNews: “What’s happened has happened and it’s been unfortunate. We look forward to a successful relationship going forward. If we ever move away from MediaCom it’s not going to be because of what’s happened here – we look at our agencies every few years anyway – I'm not going to say never but we are not looking at re-pitching the business or moving away because of what’s happened here.

Read a Q&A with Nikki Lawson here.

“There’s been misbehaviour from people on the team and it’s unfortunate that it’s happened on our business, but in terms of the way they conducted themselves, they’ve been a good partner to us and I think we'd like to treat them the way we would like to be treated if something went wrong with us,” she said.

GroupM has today outlined a raft of steps it is taking to overhaul and improve its process for the benefit of staff and clients following the recommendations put forward by independent auditor Ernst & Young as part of its investigation into the allegations of false reporting and discrepancies.

During the process of the EY audit, 19 clients and 45 campaigns across MediaCom, MEC, Mindshare and Maxus were investigated going back two years.

GroupM also carried out checks on more than 60 client accounts – none of which aired any discrepancies and clients were “satisfied and didn’t feel the need for further verification” from an official EY audit.


This article is one of a series of articles looking at the GroupM MediaCom audit. Read the rest below:
GroupM reveals findings of MediaCom audit: outlines overhaul of processes
MediaCom admits misuse of value banks – pledges no more
MediaCom faces losing at least one major client
Q&A: Yum! Brands on MediaCom - ‘As clients we’ve got to be fair
Timeline: MediaCom’s audit process



Recap the MediaCom story from last year:
MediaCom exits linked to Foxtel and KFC overcharging
Foxtel moves account from MediaCom to MindshareRogue traders: how MediaCom’s dynamite exploded MediaCom: What now - will a raft of agency audits kick off?
The media's responsibility around MediaCom

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