Uber is moving its $600 million ad account from WPP to Omnicom

  • Uber has handed its $600 million ad-buying business to Omnicom Media Group, sources say.
  • Omnicom has won the account from WPP’s EssenceMediacom.
  • EssenceMediacom will still retain Uber’s ad-buying business in the APAC region.

According to two people familiar with the situation, Uber is shifting its $600 million ad buying business from WPP to rival Omnicom.

Since 2020, WPP’s EssenceMediacom agency has handled the majority of Uber’s media planning and buying across television, digital, and out-of-home.

In March, Uber launched a competitive pitch for its media business. According to the source, IPG Mediabrands also took part.

According to the person, EssenceMediacom, an agency within WPP’s GroupM’s media investment division, will retain Uber’s business in the Asia-Pacific region. This week, the decision was announced to the agencies.

“Uber moves at a fast pace, and throughout the pitch we were impressed with Omnicom Media Group’s speed and agility, which along with the quality of their talent, technology — as embodied in their Omni marketing orchestration system — strategic thinking, and commitment to being a true partner to our business set them apart,” said David Mogensen, Uber VP of Marketing, in a

Omnicom Media Group CEO Florian Adamski said in a statement that its agencies’ “strategic data capabilities” would be central to their work for Uber.

GroupM, a subsidiary of WPP, declined to comment.

According to Adweek, Uber was looking for a “best-in-class strategic partner who will act as an extension of our internal media & marketing teams” for its brand marketing business in May. According to the information request obtained by Adweek, the review will not include its performance marketing, communications, and public affairs requirements. Adweek reported and Insider confirmed that IDComms was in charge of the review process.

After its 2019 IPO, Uber’s advertising strategy has shifted from a frenetic focus on customer acquisition — complete with a heavy emphasis on discounts and promotions — to one that seeks to entice existing users to use more of its services.

This year, the company reported its first-ever global operating profit and stated its desire to become a go-to travel platform, allowing users to book not only taxis, but also trains, flights, and car rentals. It has also concentrated its advertising efforts on Uber Eats and its membership service Uber One, which was featured in a Super Bowl ad this year starring Sean “Diddy” Combs.

According to its financial statements, Uber spent more than $4.7 billion on sales and marketing costs in 2022.

Since the beginning of July, Omnicom media agencies have scored a number of significant wins. According to marketing industry tracker COMvergence, new business has included the $585 million Beiersdorf account, the $150 million global HSBC business, and the $150 million brief from lottery operator Allwyn Entertainment.

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