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Sam Balsara acquires 51 pc stake in MediaCom India; to handle P&G media in India

03-April-2008
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Sam Balsara acquires 51 pc stake in MediaCom India; to handle P&G media in India

It appears that the Madison Media and MediaCom wildcard has worked in the favour of the agencies. The combine has bagged the P&G media business in India. With this, India is perhaps one of the few countries where GroupM is handling both Hindustan Unilever and P&G. For P&G, the strategy has been to make MediaCom the face and keep the GroupM name out of the pitch completely. However, all said, MediaCom is a GroupM agency.

The change in the story is that Sam Balsara has acquired 51 per cent in MediaCom India. This is an unprecedented move in the history of Indian advertising. Sam Balsara explained that MediaCom India became more of a Madison agency now rather than a GroupM agency, given that he had taken a stake in the business.

As is known, the pitch took place in India after a period of eight years. Following a month’s break after the brief that was given to the four agencies, the review procedures had taken place on March 3 and March 4, 2008. While presenting, MediaCom handled the planning part of the pitch, and Madison Media presented the buying side of the presentation.

India is an interesting market for P&G from an agency point of view for two reasons – this is one of few markets where any part of P&G is with a WPP-aligned company. As is known, GroupM’s MindShare handles the Hindustan Unilever business, and MediaCom, too, now is a GroupM agency. Secondly, P&G is working with a local agency for buying. At present, P&G India’s media planning is split between Starcom Worldwide and MediaCom. Madison handles the media buying for the business. Carat handles the P&G business in some markets.

Also read:

P&G India’s media pitch processes complete; stakes in the game touch new level

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