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Two years on, Unilever reviews $6 billion global media account again

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By Noel Young, Correspondent

December 13, 2011 | 3 min read

Unilever is launching a global review of its $6-billion-plus global media account , the British-Dutch giant announced today.

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The review, covering both media planning and buying, begins in January, two years after Unilever completed its last media review. So there will be little time for seasonal unwinding!

The new review comes a year after Luis Di Como succeeded Laura Klauberg as senior VP, global media .

The last review began in July 2009, ended in January 2010 and focused on media buying.

This was left largely unchanged, said Adage magazine, with WPP's MindShare continuing to handle Unilever business in North America and

Western Europe, Omnicom's PHD getting the work in China and Central Europe and Interpublic's Initiative handling the work in Latin America.

Unilever, whose mammoth list of brands ranges from Persil detergent to Lipton teas, has invited incumbent agencies Mindshare and PHK to pitch, and this time will include a few "carefully selected" competitors.

The focus is on Unilever's biggest markets: North America, Europe, Russia, India and China. Unilever spent $6.62 billion on worldwide measured media in 2010.

"We want to make sure that we continue to have best-in-class agency partners to deliver Unilever's vision: to double the size of our business while reducing our environmental impact," Di Como said in a statement.

"We will be looking at strategic planning and in-market execution capabilities from our agency partners."

Di Como said Unilever's new "Crafting Brands for Life" marketing strategy and "determination to continue

leading in the digital marketing space" also "drive us to ensure that we are working with the best agencies to

deliver our ambitions.

"Crafting Brands for Life" focuses on sustainability and the shift of Unilever's business toward developing markets, company chiefs have said.

A Unilever spokeswoman told Adage that two to three years is the "normal timescale" for the company to review its media. Unilever spent around $8 billion on advertising and promotion globally last year.

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