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International: Sony Media Business successfully defended by Universal McCann

09-July-2001
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International: Sony Media Business successfully defended by Universal McCann

Universal McCann here has successfully defended its $250 million-plus Sony Pictures Entertainment media buying business. The 14-year incumbent kept its show business credentials after a protracted six-month review that included Starcom, Chicago, and The Media Edge/MindShare, New York, in the final round.

The review began when Sony distribution chief, Jeff Blake took over marketing after Bob Levin, president of worldwide marketing, left, and the Universal McCann contract was expiring. But the review soon spiraled into a debate about consolidating media responsibilities for all Sony units, including Sony Electronics -- handled in the United States by The Media Edge out of its Irvine, Calif., office -- Sony Music Entertainment and Sony Computer Entertainment America. The decision was delayed as the TV upfront approached.

In the end, while top executives of several global networks, including WPP and Publicis, made presentations about consolidating media, the review never grew beyond the studio.

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