MEC Wins Harman's Media Business
WPP’s MEC has been selected as global media agency of record for Harman Industries, the audio equipment company. MEC will be responsible for media planning, buying, implementation
With nearly $4 billion in net sales in fiscal 2011, Harman has a relatively small U.S. ad budget—just $7 million last year, according to Kantar Media.
But that hasn’t prevented the company from spending on big-time events. Earlier this year, it ran a spot in the Grammy’s telecast featuring Paul McCartney and the JBL brand of professional studio and consumer audio products. The ad was part of the brand’s “Hear The Truth” campaign.
Harman’s founder Sidney Harman made a big splash two years ago when he purchased the struggling Newsweek magazine from The Washington Post. He died last year at the age of 92. He founded the namesake company in 1952.
Before winning the global assignment, MEC had worked on Harman’s business in several markets, including China, Russia and The Netherlands.
“As we continue to expand the global presence of our major brands, like JBL and Harman Kardon, we felt we needed a single global solution,” stated Jeff Willard, Harman’s Chief Marketing Officer. “MEC has a proven track record with Harman … and we believe this partnership will further strengthen our brands globally.”
The account will be led out of New York by MEC’s Global Solutions unit, which is headed by Eamonn Store.
Harman is based in Stamford CT and conducted the search internally without help from an outside consultant. In addition to professional and consumer audio products, the company manufactures sound systems for a number of automakers worldwide.