MFI Retail Ltd has become McCann Erickson Communications House's biggest ever client, after appointing the agency to handle its full-service account.
News of the win broke earlier this week, however, the agency has now stepped forward to confirm it will handle media planning and buying, strategy and creative for the home interest brand, replacing incumbent suppliers Zenith Optimedia and M&C Saatchi.
The eight-figure brief is one of the biggest accounts to have ever come out of London and McCann Birmingham chief executive Dean Lovett believes the win should lay to rest any remaining question marks over whether Midlands agencies can compete against the big names in London.
“This is a major win for our Birmingham operation," he said, "but it is also significant for the region’s advertising industry, not only proving that the region’s best agencies can compete with London but also that the Communications House media-neutral approach to marketing is being sought by a number of the large advertisers and we intend to capitalise on this opportunity.”
Zenith Optimedia and M&C Saatchi supported MFI on its recent change of communications approach, however, McCann has been brought in to build on this work by drawing on its integrated offering.
MFI Retail’s marketing director, Michael Greenhalgh, said: “Our decision to appoint McCann Erickson is based on their ability to offer an integrated approach to communications. As our business moves into year two of our five-year turnaround plan, we need business partners who will help us achieve the stand-out, cut-through, footfall and sales that the business deserves and needs.”
The account will be lead by McCann's Peter Gamble, who joined from McCann Manchester. He said: “The world of consumer retail communications moves very quickly, especially within a tough retail climate. This is why we have a team of retail-oriented specialists, dedicated fast-track creative, production and studio systems, all ready to develop creative excellence that can have a positive effect on MFI’s bottom line.
“And when times are tough, we also know that getting people to engage with your marketing message is more important than ever. There’s no room for misfiring – every communication needs to be on target. Universal McCann and McCann-i, our media and digital teams, will be looking at how different media channels touch the MFI audience and using our range of bespoke planning tools to help MFI make sense of the bewildering range of choices open to them in today’s fast-changing and fast-expanding media world.”
The agency is due to start work with MFI immediately, specifically on a campaign to roll out MFI’s exciting new products.