Besides Hakuhodo, Ogilvy & Mather Shanghai and Y&R Guangzhou also made it to the final round.
Midea previously worked with various ad agencies on their different home appliance products and was looking to consolidate its ATL duties into one agency.
"The client gave a similar score to Y&R Guangzhou and Hakuhodo Shanghai in the final round of the pitch, but wanted to try a Japanese ad agency for its creative style instead," one industry source close to the pitch said.
Xu Rongde, executive account director of Hakuhodo Shanghai, explained that Hakuhodo was the only Japanese agency invited to pitch. "We initially did not want to join the pitch as the client is too far away in Guangdong, but the client is very sincere and happy with our team."
Hakuhodo has very few local Chinese clients. Its client portfolio includes Japanese clients like Sharp and Taiwanese FMCG giant Master Kong, among others.
The agency did not mention how much the account is worth, but according to China media reports, Midea dethroned Procter & Gamble (P&G) to become the biggest ad spender on CCTV in 2010.
In January this year, Y&R Guangzhou was awarded Midea's creative account for its bathroom electronic appliances.