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Top 10 Media Buyers

B&C's indispensable guide to the top firms, the top execs and who has the top accounts, by our new contributing editor, Joe Mandese 10/17/2004 08:00:00 PM Eastern

1. OMD Worldwide

U.S. TV billings 2003: $5.11B
11 Madison Ave.
New York, NY 10010
212-590-7100
www.omd.com
TV Ad Spending
Network TV: $2.525 billion
Cable TV: $931 million
Syndication: $299 million
Spot: $1.4 billion
Top Management
Joe Uva, CEO, OMD Worldwide
Page Thompson, CEO, OMD North America
Top U.S. Management
Jill Botway, managing director, OMD East
Kathleen Brookbanks, managing director, OMD Midwest
Monica Karo, managing director, OMD West
Ray Warren, managing director, OMD USA–national broadcast, member of operating council
Top TV Executives
Debbie Richman, U.S. director of national broadcast
Cindy Clements, U.S. director of local broadcast
Chris Geraci, director of national broadcast
Major Accounts: Apple Computer, Clorox, Cingular, General Electric, Hershey, JC Penney, McDonald's, Nissan, Office Depot, Pepsico, State Farm, Visa
2004 In Review: With more than $5 billion in U.S. TV-related billings, OMD is Madison Avenue's TV-buying heavyweight. When it comes to national TV outlets like broadcast and cable network, the agency dominates. Price negotiation aside, OMD uses its dominant market position to leverage special program opportunities for its clients, such as the Five Days to Midnight programming deal with USA Networks' Sci Fi Channel. The deal provided 10 OMD brands—including McDonald's, Federal Express and Mountain Dew—unique product-placement opportunities within the mystery thriller. OMD demonstrated strategic initiative in the area of original research during 2004, collaborating with Arbitron on an analysis of portable-people-meter data that is believed to be the first to demonstrate the unique and overlapping reach of TV and radio advertising schedules.

2. Universal McCann

U.S. TV billings 2003: $4.72B
622 Third Ave.
New York, NY 10017
646-865-5000
www.universalmccann.com
TV Ad Spending
Network TV: $1.834 billion
Cable TV: $784 million
Syndication: $316 million
Spot: $1.790 billion
Top Management
Robin Kent, chairman/CEO
Top U.S. management
Jean Pool, EVP/director of operations North America/head of LCI spot-buying unit
Top TV Executives
Donna Wolfe, EVP/director of broadcast
Annette Cerbone, SVP/director of national broadcast
Affiliate: Magna Global (TV negotiating arm for Interpublic units Universal McCann and Initiative Media)
Ira Carlin, global chairman
Bill Cella, U.S. chairman
Major Accounts: AFLAC, Johnson & Johnson, Kohl's, L'Oréal, Lowe's, Microsoft, Nestlé, Sony
2004 In Review: Following a stellar 2002 and 2003 in which the agency seemed to be operating on all cylinders, Universal McCann's fortunes appeared to turn sour in 2004. While the Interpublic unit did pick up some important new business, including Verizon Wireless and USA Today's media-planning and -buying accounts, the year was marked by some notable defections among clients and some of the agency's top management as well. Throughout 2004, UM lost several key managers, including Creative Director Alan Schulman, research and media-futures executive Jon Swallen, and key account managers. Director of Client Services Chuck Thompson left to join the Cabletelevision Advertising Bureau as head of sales. Nonetheless, UM is considered a leader in the emerging practice of communications planning and has continued to generate high marks for its original consumer-research studies and market-forecasting operations.

3. MindShare

U.S. TV billings 2003: $4.06B
825 Eighth Ave.
New York, NY 10019
646-756-4000
www.mindshareworld.com
TV Ad Spending
Network TV: $1.447 billion
Cable TV: $772 million
Syndication: $211 million
Spot: $1.625 billion
Top Management
Irwin Gotlieb, chairman/CEO, Group M
Dominick Procter, CEO, MindShare
Top U.S. Management
Marc Goldstein, president/CEO, MindShare USA/president national broadcast
Ray Simko, president, strategic planning
Top TV executives:
Kathy Crawford, president, MindShare Local Broadcast
Peter Tortorici, president, MindShare Entertainment.
Jason Maltby, senior partner/managing director, national TV
Shari Cohen, senior partner/managing director
Richard Cotter, senior partner/director of local broadcast
Major Accounts: American Express, Bristol-Myers, Gillette, IBM, Kimberly Clark, Kodak, Mattel, Novartis, Sears, Unilever
2004 In Review: It was hard to top 2003, when MindShare was lauded by several trade magazines for its prowess and earned accolades for its groundbreaking work for Yahoo! Personals' "Project: Real People," which featured a single woman who lived, dated and hooked up live in front of the public on a billboard created by MindShare. As if that weren't enough, MindShare struck a maverick programming alliance with ABC that developed The Days. Aside from representing the potential for tie-ins for MindShare clients such as Unilever, the lead client on the project, the deal signals a direct role for the agency in program development.

4. MediaVest

U.S. TV billings 2003: $3.31B
1675 Broadway
New York, NY 10019
212-468-4000
www.smvgroup.com
TV Ad Spending
Network TV: $1.345 billion
Cable TV: $845 million
Syndication: $418 million
Spot: $705 million
Top management
Jack Klues, CEO, Starcom MediaVest Group
Renetta McCann, CEO, The Americas, Starcom MediaVest Group
Laura Desmond, CEO
Top U.S. TV executives
Donna Speciale, president, U.S. broadcast
Mariebeth Papuga, SVP, local broadcast
Major Accounts: Altria, Avon, Capital One, Coca-Cola, Ernst & Young, Heineken, Mars, Masterfoods, Procter & Gamble, Paramount, UBS Warburg
2004 In Review: Despite having more media-billings clout than its sister unit, MediaVest is frequently overshadowed by Starcom, whose management have been on the rise and calls the shots at Publicis' Starcom MediaVest Group (SMG). But that perception belies the feisty, and winning nature of MediaVest CEO Laura Desmond, who has crafted a uniquely differentiated media-services brand that is the perfect complement to Starcom. Where Starcom is seen as a strategic visionary, MediaVest is known for its marketplace muscle, an attribute that no doubt factored into its win late in 2003 of Coca-Cola Co.'s massive media-buying account. The win effectively consolidated the soft-drink giant's business at SMG (Starcom already had the planning assignment), but what is not known generally is how strategic MediaVest is on its own accord. Whereas Starcom pursues strategic innovation through original research, MediaVest uses market leverage and creativity, striking branded-content deals for clients such as Procter & Gamble (Swiffer), Coca-Cola and Crest (White Strips).

5. Zenith

U.S. TV billings 2003: $3.30B
299 W. Houston St.
New York, NY 10014
212-859-5100
www.zenithmedia.com
TV Ad Spending
Network TV: $1.161 billion
Cable TV: $392 million
Syndication: $54 million
Spot: $1.695 billion
Top Management
Stephen King, CEO, ZenithOptimedia Group, Worldwide
Top U.S. Management
Rich Hamilton, CEO, ZenithOptimedia Group, The Americas
Top TV Executive
Peggy Green, president, broadcast, Zenith Media Services
Major accounts: Toyota, Verizon, General Mills, Schering Plough, Astra Zeneca
2004 In Review: Zenith Optimedia got off to a rocky start this year, when its U.K.-based founder and CEO John Perriss stepped down. Perriss, who masterminded Zenith, the first of the major unbundled agency media-services units, left no apparent heir, sparking speculation on the succession. Ultimately, the agency named Steve King, an ambitious and personable executive who had helped Perriss launch Zenith in 1988. The move ended speculation that one of ZenithOptimedia Group's U.S. executives might take the reins. The management turmoil also sparked rumors that ZenithOptimedia might ultimately be folded under a new corporate-level media management post at parent Publicis. But Publicis has subsequently formed a corporate media organization, and ZenithOptimedia's King sits on it alongside Starcom MediaVest Group chief Jack Klues.

6. Initiative Media

U.S. TV billings 2003: $2.90B
1 Dag Hammarskjold Plaza
New York, NY 10017
212-605-7000
www.im-na.com
TV Ad Spending
Network TV: $1.156 million
Cable TV: $711 million
Syndication: $114 million
Spot: $914 million
Top management
Alec Gerster, CEO, Initiative Worldwide
Top U.S. management:
Carolyn Bivens, president/COO, Initiative North America
Top TV executives
Tim Spengler, EVP/director of national broadcast
Sue Johenning, EVP/director of local broadcast
David Ernst, EVP/director of futures and technologies
Stacey Lynn Koerner, EVP/director of global research integration
Negotiating Affiliate: Magna Global USA (TV negotiating arm for Interpublic units Universal McCann and Initiative Media)
Ira Carlin, chairman, Magna Global Worldwide
Major Accounts: America Online, Bayer Corp., Bell South, Coors, The Home Depot, Merck, SC Johnson
2004 In Review: Initiative had a tough start, losing a number of key clients. It had to defend one of its most important accounts, America Online's $200 million media-planning and -buying assignment, against blue-chip contenders. Ultimately, Initiative retained AOL and has been lauded for AOL's breakthrough "Running Man" campaign.

7. Starcom

U.S. TV billings 2003: $2.75B
35 W. Wacker Dr.
Chicago, IL 60601
312-220-3535
www.smvgroup.com
TV Ad Spending
Network TV: $1.101 billion
Cable TV: $539 million
Syndication: $211 million
Spot: $895 million
Top management (network)
Jack Klues, CEO, Starcom MediaVest Group
Renetta McCann, CEO, The Americas, Starcom MediaVest Group
John Muszynski, EVP/managing director of investment operations engagement
Steven Fueling, EVP/chief marketing officer
Top U.S. management:
John Muszynski, EVP/managing director of investment operations engagement
Steven Fueling, EVP/chief marketing officer
Chris Boothe, EVP/group client leader
Andrew Swinand, SVP/group client leader
Elizabeth Herbst-Brady, SVP/director of broadcast investment
Top U.S. TV executives
Elizabeth Herbst-Brady, SVP/director of broadcast investment
Kevin Gallagher, SVP/director of local investment
Major Accounts: Allstate, Hallmark, Kellogg, Miller, Morgan Stanley, Phillip Morris, Procter & Gamble.
2004 In Review: Starcom, the Chicago-based half of Starcom Media Vest Group, continued to live up to its reputation for innovation, winning (with Carat) P&G's new communications planning assignment, a strategic adventure that has huge implications for the future of advertising.

8. MediaCom

U.S. TV billings 2003: $2.71B
77 Third Ave.
New York, NY 10017
212-545-2100
www.mediacom.com
TV Ad Spending
Network TV: $1.182 billion
Cable TV: $600 million
Syndication: $241 million
Spot: $689 million
Top management
Alexander Schmidt-Vogel, CEO, MediaCom Worldwide
Top U.S. management
Jon Mandel, chairman, MediaCom U.S./chief global buying officer, MediaCom Worldwide
Dene Callas, CEO, MediaCom U.S.
Top TV Executives
Jon Mandel, chief global buying officer
Peter Olsen, EVP, national broadcast
Anne Elkins, EVP, local broadcast
Major Accounts: Cendant, Dannon, Diageo, GlaxoSmithKline, Hasbro, Kmart, Smucker's, Subway, Warner Bros.
2004 In Review: Few had it as tough as MediaCom in 2004. Just as the media shop was poised to reposition itself with a new marketing chief and a new brand identity, the agency lost one of its biggest assignments, media planning for Procter & Gamble. Then, parent company Grey Global Group was acquired by rival WPP Group. That caused account defections, including Masterfoods' Mars brand and Wyeth's Consumer Healthcare division. VW also is reportedly reevaluating its $1.4 billion global media-planning assignment, split between MPG and MediaCom. WPP's acquisition isn't expected to close until late this year or early next, but questions abound.

9. Carat

U.S. TV billings 2003: $2.50B
3 Park Ave.
New York, NY 10016
212-689-6800
www.carat-na.com
TV Ad Spending
Network TV: $1.150 billion
Cable TV: $600 million
Syndication: $175 million
Spot: $575 million
Top Management
David Verklin, CEO, Carat Americas
Top U.S. Management
Charlie Rutman, president, Carat USA
Top TV executive
Andy Donchin, EVP/director of national broadcast
Major Accounts: Alberto-Culver, Bank One, Hyundai, Midas, Radio Shack, Remax, Papa John's, Pfizer, Procter & Gamble
2004 In Review: The year started off on the wrong foot for Carat, which struck out on three high-profile account pitches: American Express, America Online and Coca-Cola Co. The agency, the youngest of the major U.S. media-services giants, was developing a reputation for being more a bridesmaid than a bride, until it snagged what many consider the biggest plum account of all, Procter & Gamble's communications-planning assignment. Although the business was split with Starcom MediaVest Group (see Starcom profile), the win was especially significant for Carat, firmly establishing it as a strategic-planning heavyweight. Meanwhile, Carat has also emerged as a significant media-buying factor, breaking into the top 10 TV-buying shops for the first time this year.

10. Mediaedge:cia

U.S. TV billings 2003: $2.40B
825 Seventh Ave.
New York, NY 10019
212-474-0000
www.mediaedge.com
TV Ad Spending
Network TV: $925 million
Cable TV: $400 million
Syndication: $80 million
Spot: $995 million
Top management
Charles Courtier, executive chairman, worldwide
Top U.S. management
Rino Scanzoni, chief investment officer
Lee Doyle, managing partner, client services
Tom Handy, chief financial officer
Joe Abruzzo, managing partner/director of MediaLab
Kim Vasey, director of radio
Alan Schanzer, managing partner, The Digital Edge
Top U.S. TV executives
Rino Scanzoni, chief investment officer
Maggie Ross, managing partner, local broadcast, North America
Lyle Schwartz, director, research and marketplace analysis
Michael Bologna, emerging media communications director
Major Accounts: New accounts include Citibank, United Airlines and Adams (part of Cadbury Schweppes). Others include AT&T, Campbell Soup, Colgate Palmolive, Yum Brands, Mattel, DHL, GlaxoSmithKline, Xerox,
2004 In Review: Mediaedge:cia is one of the least understood media agency brands in the U.S., but it dominates overseas. It got noticed when it won Paramount Pictures' $480 million media-planning and -buying account.

BY THE NUMBERS
2003 billings
TOTAL (billions) TOTAL (billions)
1 OMD $5,110 6 Initiative $2,895
2 Universal $4,724 7 Starcom $2,746
3 MindShare $4,055 8 MediaCom $2,712
4 MediaVest $3,313 9 Carat $2,500
5 Zenith $3,302 10 Mediaedge:cia $2,400
Top 10 Total $33,388
SOURCE: B&C estimates; excludes Spanish-language TV
How the Top 10 Slice the TV Pie
(Billings in billion dollars, U.S. only, 2003)
RANK AGENCY TOTAL TV ALL MEDIA TV/ALL MEDIA BROADCAST NETS BCST/TOTAL TV SPOT TV SPOT/TOTAL TV CABLE NETS CABLE/TOTAL TV SYNDIE SYNDIE/TOTAL TV
1 OMD $5,110 $8,330 61% $2,525 49% $1,355 27% $931 18% $299 6%
2 Universal McCann $4,724 $7,395 64% $1,834 39% $1,790 38% $784 17% $316 7%
3 MindShare $4,055 $9,400 43% $1,447 36% $1,625 40% $772 19% $211 5%
4 MediaVest $3,313 $4,355 76% $1,345 41% $705 21% $845 26% $418 13%
5 Zenith $3,302 $4,350 76% $1,161 35% $1,695 51% $392 12% $54 2%
6 Initiative $2,895 $5,080 57% $1,156 40% $914 32% $711 25% $114 4%
7 Starcom $2,746 $7,505 37% $1,101 41% $895 33% $539 19% $211 8%
8 MediaCom $2,712 $5,000 54% $1,182 44% $689 25% $600 22% $241 9%
9 Carat $2,500 $4,720 53% $1,150 46% $575 23% $600 24% $175 7%
10 Mediaedge:cia $2,400 $5,265 46% $925 39% $995 41% $400 17% $80 3%
Total $33,757 $61,400 55% $13,826 41% $11,238 33% $6,574 20% $2,119 6%
SOURCE: B&C TV expenditures estimates, agency billings from RECMA

 

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