Volkswagen Group has selected Omnicom’s PHD as its global media agency following a lengthy competitive review.
WPP’s MediaCom, which has a lengthy relationship with the automaker, had handled most of the business, including the US market. The review covered VW Group brands including Volkswagen, Audi, Porsche, Seat, Skoda and commercial vehicles. PHD was an incumbent on the Porsche business. The VW Group win is considered to be the largest win in PHD’s history.
Volkswagen spent more than $3 billion on measured media worldwide in 2014, ranking it as the globe’s sixth-largest advertiser, according to the most recent information from the Ad Age Datacenter.
Omnicom “stood out against the competition and convinced all the group brands involved by providing trendsetting impetus in media management and a broad-based, strategically sound service range,” VW Group says in a statement. The automaker adds “new digitalization possibilities and new ways of targeting specific groups are to be put to much greater use in media planning.”
An Omnicom spokeswoman referred calls for comment to Volkswagen Group, while a Mediacom spokeswoman did not immediately return an email for comment.
In the US, the VW business will be handled by a separate Omnicom Media Group unit dedicated to VW Group, just as Porsche is handled today.
The agency change comes as VW Group continues to deal with fallout from an emissions cheating scandal that broke late last year with Volkswagen of America reporting its worst May US sales total since 2011.