Back In It! GAO Rules That McCann May Rejoin The U.S. Army Ad Review

Phew! The folks at McCann World Group must be breathing a collective sigh of relief after yesterday’s ruling on the protest it filed in July after being eliminated from the U.S. Army ad contract review.

The agency is now back in the running after the Government Accounting Office reviewed the protest and ruled in its favor.  

The Army business has been very good for McCann. It’s the incumbent on the account, which it has held for over a decade after successfully defending a couple of times.

The firm has reaped an estimated $30 million in annual revenues from the assignment in recent years.

The Army kicked off a review awhile back and in July, the GAO axed McCann, which quickly filed a formal protest. McCann argued that it was unfairly eliminated by the government arm, which made the decision to cut the agency before the client — the U.S. Army — had a chance to weigh in on the merits of its proposal.

Exactly why the GAO reversed course and decided to let McCann back in remains unclear, for now.



While the outcome has been disclosed publicly, the actual decision remains under wraps.

A GAO attorney explained the decision “is subject to a protective order and not releasable to the public. A public version of the decision will be prepared shortly that will be available for review and will be posted to our website as soon as it is issued.”

That public version is likely to have some redactions in it, according to the GAO’s official announcement on the outcome.

McCann will continue to handle the account for at least another year. Late last month, the Army extended the shop’s current contract until next September as it winds its way through the review process. No word yet on when the Army expects to make a decision.

McCann declined to comment, referring queries to the GAO.


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