Mediacom

Mediacom Worldwide

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Mediacom was originally the media planning and buying network of Grey Global Group, now a division within WPP. It is one of the widest-ranging global media shops, with offices in almost 100 countries, although it is strongest in just a few major territories, especially Germany and the UK, where it dominates the local market. The US office suffered uneven performance for several years in the 2000s but has stabilised more recently with several key wins. Like other media networks, Mediacom has broadened its offering considerably in recent years, establishing satellite units specialising in sports and entertainment sponsorship and content development. Mediacom was the #3 media specialist worldwide in 2016 with billings of $32.92bn (according to Recma). It is one of four global media networks now under WPP's control, operating separately from Mindshare and MEC, although it benefits from the group's pooled buying power.

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Mediacom Austria Mediacom Germany
Mediacom Denmark Mediacom USA
Mediacom UK Mediacom Switzerland
Mediacom Norway Mediacom Netherlands

Recent stories from Adbrands Weekly Update:

Adbrands Weekly Update 5th Jun 2017: Procter & Gamble completed the latest round in its global media review. Starcom retained all existing media responsibilities in the UK and also added other assignments previously managed by Mediacom, including press media buying. In German-speaking markets, incumbent Mediacom retained its position, but only as a result of agreeing to establish a dedicated joint venture with independently owned Pilot Media, which had previously handled some digital duties. In Nordic markets, however, Mediacom lost its brief to Carat.

Adbrands Weekly Update 9th February 2017: Grey CEO Jim Heekin, in a memo to staff obtained by Adweek, revealed that Grey will be the lead advertising agency within WPP's new Team WBA vertical agency for Walgreens Boots Alliance, working with Mediacom (for media), Burson-Marsteller (for PR) and Townhouse (for production). WPP had not previously disclosed which agencies would be contributing to Team WBA.

Adbrands Weekly Update 22nd Dec 2016: A few of the year's biggest remaining media reviews were wrapped up in time for Christmas, in what was for the most part an epic battle between WPP and Publicis. Mediacom has partly offset the loss of the giant Volkswagen account, in Germany at least, with the capture of Nestle's local business there, which moves from Optimedia after 13 years. The WPP-owned agency is setting up a dedicated unit to handle the business under the name People at Heart, or PatH. Mediacom was also reconfirmed as local media agency for Ikea, in a three-way pitch against MEC and Carat. The agency added digital media, previously handled by Plan.net, though the latter retains search duties. While WPP agencies got the upper hand in those battles, the results of Mars Inc's review were more equally balanced between the two groups. Global planning duties remain with Mediacom, but local buying was up for grabs in seven key global markets. Zenith Media retained the UK business, while Publicis stablemate Starcom was reappointed for China and South East Asia. However Starcom also gained Germany and India from Mediacom, though it lost Australia and New Zealand.

Adbrands Weekly Update 18th Aug 2016: P&G is continuing to tweak international media requirements. It concluded a review in China, retaining Starcom as lead agency for buying but expanding the role of planning partner Mediacom to cover more brands, as well as branded entertainment, digital and selected ecommerce projects. P&G also confirmed this week that it will indeed review media in the UK, as had been rumoured for a couple of weeks. Starcom currently handles broadcast and most other media, while Mediacom has print and some planning duties.

Adbrands Weekly Update 16th Jun 2016: It's already looking like this year will see a round of major account reviews to match last year's "mediapalooza". One of the last hangovers from that media frenzy came to its bloody conclusion this week with the axeing of long-time partner Mediacom as global media network for Volkswagen Group's massive E2bn budget. Instead, in a triumph for Omnicom over WPP, the business will transfer to PHD from January 2017. The latter agency already manages the Porsche brand in several countries as well as other high-end marques, but it will now also take over all the group's mass-market autos, including Seat, Skoda and Audi as well as VW. Omnicom's DDB is the Volkswagen brand's main creative network. It is thought to be PHD network's biggest ever account win. In several markets, including the US, Omnicom will create a dedicated unit within the agency to handle the account.


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Background

Free for all users | see full profile for current activities: Germany is in many respects Mediacom's home country. It was here that the shop was first established as an independent unit, in 1986. Since then the format has been gradually extended around the globe. Grey London's media department was split out as Mediacom in 1992, and other markets followed suit. Ironically Grey's official HQ, the US, was the last major market to get its own Mediacom office. A Canadian outpost was established in 1997 after a tie-up with local independent Media Buying Services. Mediacom US was formed the following year from the agency's existing media departments to handle all US buying for Grey clients, although some planning was still handled in-house at Grey. That year the group also captured its most significant account to-date, winning the consolidated Volkswagen Group account in Germany.

Also in 1998, the UK office was considerably strengthened with the acquisition of highly regarded UK agency The Media Business. Originally launched in 1975, this was one of the original British media independents. TMB spun off a satellite company, Bullet Media, in 1991 as a partnership with HHCL, and two years later, came close to be engulfed by the ill-fated GGT. It maintained its independence and in 1995, TMB floated 30% of its shares, launching two regional subsidiaries shortly afterwards. But in mid-1998, after months of discussions, it announced it was to be bought by Grey. The deal was called off a few weeks later after the collapse of global stockmarkets depressed both companies' valuations, but was resurrected at the end of the year. The new member of the family promptly won its own slice of the VW business, taking the UK account worth a further £60m.

Over the next few years, Mediacom set about building a presence in new markets, either through acquisition or local joint ventures, some of which remain. See full profile for current activities


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