L'Oréal reviews £135m UK media account after Maxus/MEC merger

L’Oreal reviews £135m UK media account after Maxus/MEC merger

L'Oréal's media business in the UK and Ireland is under review, threatening Wavemaker's hold on the contract.

The cosmetics company last reviewed the business in 2013, when Nielsen estimated it to be worth £135m.

WPP media agency Maxus was appointed to the account in 2014, taking it out of Publicis' ZenithOptimedia which had managed the business for nearly a decade.

However, L'Oréal has since had to navigate a number of changes within the WPP agency. Most notably, in 2017 it was folded into sister media shop MEC to form consolidated agency group, Wavemaker, swiftly followed by Mondelez’s senior director of global media strategy Josep Hernandez being flown in to lead the account from Paris earlier this year.

L'Oréal said that agencies and holding companies in the UK have already been approached by Aperto-One, the intermediary it has employed as a strategic advisor for the process.

The review process is expected to commence in early 2019.

Gayle Noah, media director, for L’Oréal in the UK and Ireland said the cosmetics giant was looking to “ensure we remain at the forefront of modern media practice”.

“As an innovative and forward-thinking business, it is about having the very best strategic, data-driven and collaborative partners,” Noah said. “We look forward to seeing how the participating agencies respond to our business challenges throughout this process."

Last year, L'Oréal's media buying business in France was moved into the Publicis Groupe.

As part of the pitch, Publicis was asked to build a “competitive future marketing model” for L'Oréal France. This came in the shape of a solution Publicis has dubbed ‘iBeauty’, which it described as a “data-driven media model which connects creative and digital teams through Publicis Groupe’s Power of One approach".

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