Sanofi Names Omnicom Media Group as Global Media AOR

By | December 23, 2020

French pharmaceutical giant Sanofi has appointed Omnicom Media Group as its global media agency of record, sources with knowledge of the account confirmed to Adweek.

Omnicom Media Group will be responsible for all digital and traditional media buying and planning across Sanofi’s consumer healthcare and pharmaceutical brands outside the U.S. The media agency network will work with Sanofi via a dedicated Sanofi @ Omnicom media unit that will bring together talent, systems and tools from across the agency developed for the pitch, according to sources with knowledge of the relationship.

The appointment follows a seven-month review overseen by search consultancy MediaSense announced in June. MediaSense and Sanofi have not responded to requests for comment.

Global incumbent Mindshare and U.S. incumbent Havas Media both defended in the review, with IPG Mediabrands also participating, according to sources with knowledge of the process. It’s unclear whether Sanofi has appointed a U.S. media agency of record. Sanofi appointed Mindshare as its global media agency of record and Havas Media as U.S. media agency of record for its pharmaceutical brands in 2017, following a review. Havas Media and IPG Mediabrands declined to comment. Mindshare could not be reached for comment.

During a Q1 earnings call, Sanofi CEO Paul Hudson discussed the company’s plans to further invest in digital marketing, which he said had been underappreciated in the category. Omnicom’s ability to demonstrate global data and analytics capabilities via its Omni platform and alignment with Hudson’s Play to Win strategy were major factors in the global appointment, according to sources.

Sanofi spent an estimated $1.1 billion on media globally from July 2019 to June 2020, about $430 million of which was spent outside North America, according to global data consultancy COMvergence.

Sanofi wasn’t the only company in the health space to review its global media account in 2020. In October, WPP retained global media agency responsibilities for pharmacy and retail company Walgreens Boots Alliance following a review launched in May. For Omnicom, the appointment follows Georgia-Pacific appointing OMD as its U.S. media agency of record last month, and bookends a year that saw PHD win global media agency of record duties for Diageo back in March.