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Agencies Coca-Cola First Direct

WPP agencies sweep up beverage and banking clients


By Sam Bradley, Journalist

November 12, 2021 | 5 min read

This week, we consider a series of pitched victories at WPP, with clients across the beverage and banking sectors choosing the British company’s agencies.


Modelo is the second best-selling beer brand in the US

Constellation Group, the brewer behind beer brand Modelo, announced the selection of Grey as its agency of record this week after a two-month review process.

Work begins on Modelo, the second best-selling beer brand in the US, later this month out of Grey’s New York offices; the agency says it plans on servicing the account with talent from Los Angeles and Mexico ’to ensure brand authenticity remains paramount.’

Explaining the choice, Jim Sabia, executive vice-president and managing director at Constellation’s beer division, said: “Constellation is excited to partner with Grey to drive the Modelo creative work to the next level, reflective of the brand’s leading position in the industry and with consumers.

“We are most excited to build a distinct model unique to Modelo, utilizing Grey’s bench of world-class talent and a borderless model across the key markets that reflect Modelo’s core audience.”

Treble week

It’s one of three major wins for WPP agencies this week. Coca-Cola appointed the holding company to lead its global marketing efforts, granting it the majority of its $4bn marketing business amid an overhaul of the fizzy titan’s agency system.

A bespoke team, dubbed OpenX, will handle end-to-end creative, media and data work for Coke across 200 countries and the entire Coca-Cola portfolio.

Manolo Arroyo, Coke’s global chief marketing officer, in a statement said: “I am delighted to be partnering with WPP as we accelerate our marketing transformation. We were impressed by WPP’s ability to balance what it takes to deliver integrated consumer experiences at a global scale with the agility, speed and data-driven insights that are required to win locally. WPP will bring creative excellence and unparalleled marketing capabilities at a global scale that no other network can deploy.”

While WPP is not the only winner – Dentsu took home the honors for Japan and Korea, while IPG is set to be included in its strategic roster – it will bolster confidence at the comms giant, which recently saw its market cap surpassed by Publicis for the first time. WPP boss Mark Read said: ”It’s unparalleled in our industry ... and reflects WPP’s scale and reach around the world.”

WPP’s third account this week was banking brand First Direct, which picked Wunderman Thompson to develop a new campaign and brand positioning due next year. First Direct formerly partnered with The Brooklyn Brothers; Wunderman already handles the business for parent bank HSBC.

First Direct’s head of marketing James Davies said: “Showcasing First Direct’s unique straight-talking personality, the campaign will aim to grow our customer base and showcase our relevance to society. It includes a strong focus on social – across multiple platforms – while feeding into an always-on, long-term creative platform for the UK market.”

Moves you may have missed

  • British Airways appointed Omnicom Media Group as its media and SEO partner after a review that consolidated the prestige airline’s media buying activities with a single agency.

  • L’Oréal Middle East has chosen Accenture Interactive to improve its customer experiences; Accenture will apply its digital transformation expertise to the cosmetic-maker’s brand portfolio right across the region.

  • Investment platform Bestinvest has appointed Harbour Collective as its creative agency, and VCCP Media to handle its media buying and planning.

  • Bigfoot Digital was appointed by west Yorkshire energy wholesaler Yesss Electrical.

  • IMA Home has been appointed by low cost Australian airline Bonza.

  • Leeds agency Hatch has been appointed by jeweller Berry’s and soft drinks brand Rio.

  • Gifts retailer the Portmeirion Group has selected Journey Further to produce a Christmas campaign, following a competitive pitch against two other agencies.

Want to tell us about an account win or client appointment? Tips, stories and winter soup recipes welcome at

Agencies Coca-Cola First Direct

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