Briefing documents will be given to the agencies this afternoon, with the pitch presentation slated for later this month.
One agency source suggested that Wellcome is reportedly seeking better creative chemistry after some recent management changes both client-side and agency-side, as well as to adjust its strategy in terms of advertising.
Campaign Asia-Pacific contacted Julie Chiu, sales and marketing director for Wellcome, for comment but she did not respond before publication time.
In an earlier interview, Chiu stated that she was "always arguing with our agencies because advertising agencies have a different agenda, but the truth is we are Wellcome and that’s what our brand has to be… Don’t make the brand what it’s not”.
“Brand management is all about being practical, being realistic," she added. "As I always say: Wellcome is Wellcome is Wellcome. We’re a supermarket, we’ll always be a supermarket".
Shortly after Chiu joined the company in March last year, replacing Diane Chiu, the brand tried new tactical executions—such as a TVC with interactive game elements—to engage shoppers better than conventional lucky draws, which were proving less effective than in the past.
“Hong Kong people are very smart nowadays, they no longer look at [just] the communications material, but the intentions behind advertising,” Julie Chiu said in the earlier interview.
Wellcome has worked with McCann in Hong Kong since at least 2005. Its media is still brokered by UM. Danny Chan, who served as group creative director on the Wellcome account at McCann-Erickson Guangming Hong Kong for more than seven years, left the agency in August last year.
In the past quarter, McCann has lost another supermarket client under the Dairy Farm group (Marketplace by Jasons) to Grey, and Volkswagen to Ogilvy.
Chiu is in charge of three other business divisions apart from Wellcome: ThreeSixty, Marketplace by Jasons and Oliver’s The Delicatessen.