MasterCard confirmed with Campaign Asia-Pacific that it is conducting a review of its media agency partners, but said it was not able to comment further as the pitch is still in the early stages. The pitch is limited only to the media buying activities and not any other agency relationships, the company said.
"As part of regular business practices, MasterCard regularly reviews and assesses industry resources as part of responsible vendor and agency management," a spokesperson said. "The integrated McCann team will continue to support MasterCard in other marketing activities, including creative, digital and sponsorships/partnerships."
UM is the incumbent for MasterCard globally.
The pitch does not come as a complete surprise for the industry as MasterCard appointed Raja Rajamannar as chief marketing officer in August, replacing Alfredo Gangotena, who retired in September. Based in Purchase, New York, Rajamannar has global responsibility for MasterCard’s advertising, sponsorships, promotions, research, insights, and digital and consumer marketing initiatives.
He was previously with WellPoint, Humana, Citigroup and Unilever in various senior marketing positions.