SMG's Spark Wins ConAgra Media Duties

ConAgra has selected Spark Communications for U.S. media planning and buying duties after a review, according to sources.

The Omaha-based food and grocery products giant spent $194 million on ads in 2012, according to Kantar. For the first nine months of 2013 it spent $134 million.

The incumbent on the business was WPP’s MediaCom, which had handled the account for over a decade. The client’s last comprehensive media review was in 2006, when MediaCom successfully defended its assignment.

In 2011, however, Spark prevailed in a review of digital media duties, which MediaCom had also handled up to that point.

ConAgra brands include Healthy Choice, Banquet, Chef Boyardee, Orville Redenbacher’s, among many others.  The company reported nearly $15.5 billion in revenue in 2013.

For Spark, the win is the latest in a string of new business assignments. Sources said the shop, part of the Starcom MediaVest Group, has notched more than 15 pieces of new business over the past year, with expenditures totaling $800 million, including the $300 million-plus AbbVie pharmaceutical assignment and the $45 million Ace Hardware account. More recently, it won Duke Energy and European Wax Center.

Spark declined to comment on the win. A ConAgra rep declined to comment on the agency switch. “We have a standard practice of not disclosing agency relationships,” the rep said. 

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