COMvergence Study Finds More Talk Than Action For U.S. Consolidation Pitches

While there has been talk in recent years of brands moving toward a consolidation model with respect to choosing ad agencies, a COMvergence analysis of U.S. agency reviews over the past two years shows that of the 570 pitches where the result was a shift to different agencies, just 67 advertisers put both their creative and media accounts in review simultaneously.

Of those 67, just 25 advertisers conducted integrated pitches and of those 25, only 13 selected agencies from the same holding company.  

While consolidation is an option, it doesn’t appear to be the major trend that some have suggested. Having more than one throat to throttle, it seems, is still the preferred option for most clients.

Of the 13 reviews where agencies from the same holding company were selected, six clients selected IPG agencies — Fuji Film, TGI Fridays, Navy Federal Credit Union, Hawaiian Air, Shoe Carnival and UPS.

Two clients each went with WPP (U.S. Marine Corps, Walgreens), Publicis (Invisalign, Edgewell) and Omnicom (Air France, San Diego Zoo).



One client chose agencies aligned with MDC Partners (Hackensack Meridian Health).

The research, which included pitches with a minimum of $3 million in media spending for calendar years 2019 and 2020, showed that of the 25 advertisers conducting a single integrated review, only five had an annual spend greater than $100 million.

The budget for the remaining 20 marketers ranged between $3 million to $57 million.

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