There is another twist in the Reckitt Benckiser media pitch tale. The pitch that had created a huge controversy when it was announced in May 2010, is finally coming to a conclusion. The FMCG major is said to be moving its Rs 200 crore upwards media business to ZenithOptimedia – the only other agency, apart from the incumbent MPG, that was an active part of the media pitch.
While agencies like Allied Media and even Initiative (Karishma Initiative in India) were associated with the initial part of this pitch, by the end of the process, it was only ZenithOptimedia that had participated in the various bids included in the pitch process.
Even as neither the client nor the agency have confirmed the development yet, highly placed sources have informed exchange4media that Reckitt Benckiser has begun the process of shifting its media AoR. ZenithOptimedia is said to begin work on the business by January 2011.
The Reckitt Benckiser media pitch attracted much industry debate because of certain clauses associated with the pitch that included a media pitch participation fee, CPRP-linked deals and clauses on agency remuneration for the first year that the industry did not agree with. The pitch call was immediately followed by the Advertising Agencies Association of India (AAAI) issuing a diktat at the time, discouraging agencies from participating in the pitch.
Most agencies had adhered to the AAAI advice and had stayed away from the pitch. ZenithOptimedia, which has global relations with Reckitt Benckiser, had proceeded with the process, and according to sources has now emerged winner.
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