Concluding one of the biggest pitches in China in recent memory and taking a massive client away from GroupM's Mindshare, Publicis Groupe has won L'Oreal's media planning and buying in China.
Mindshare and Omnicom Media Group's PHD were also involved in the pitch, which lasted about six months, with the contest coming down to Publicis Groupe and Mindshare in the final stage. Annual billings are at least US$800 million, according to industry estimates. Campaign also understands that Dentsu had declined to participate in the pitch earlier in the process. Consultancy R3 handled the pitch.
The contract runs for three years and covers integrated media strategy, channel planning, activation, and buying across all media channels including performance marketing. Publicis will set up a bespoke unit, dubbed OneL'Oreal, "with data, innovation and technology at the core", according to Publicis Groupe. Ecommerce and social/KOL activity were not part of the pitch, Campaign understands.
"OneL’Oréal is set up to drive a purpose-driven operating model to ensure greater accountability, transparency and sustainability for L’Oréal, all in service of business growth," a release said.
Mindshare has held most of the cosmetic maker's media business in China for many years. It wrested the account from Optimedia in 2010, added online media in 2013 in a consolidation and took over performance and ecommerce in 2017.
“This is truly a landmark win for Publicis Groupe China," Jane Lin-Baden, managing partner of Publicis Groupe APAC and CEO of Publicis Groupe North Asia, said in a statement. "L’Oréal is one of the most respected, innovative and visionary companies, and the fact they have chosen Publicis Groupe as their future media partner is recognition that we are bringing truly pioneering data and technology solutions to market."
Arthur Sadoun, chairman and CEO of Publicis Groupe thanked the client for its trust. "Having the opportunity to extend our relationship with them in such a strategic market is a real honor and a fantastic challenge," he said. "It is also the recognition of the great work done by our teams in China."
Mindshare, Dentsu and R3 declined to offer comment.