Tesco has sparked a battle for its estimated £110m advertising account, as it seeks to breathe new life into the brand after its turbulent recent performance.
The invitation for agencies to pitch for its account comes ahead of a widely anticipated marketing blitz designed to seize back the initiative in the UK and follows a shake-up of Tesco’s domestic marketing team.
Longstanding account holder the Red Brick Road, which has worked with Tesco for many years, will pitch for the brand communications activity while continuing to work on trade communications.
Tesco is launching a major advertising campaign at the end of the month to push its new Everyday Value range. But that is likely to be just the start of a major ramping up of its advertising, having come in for criticism of late that it has been overshadowed by rivals.
Recently former Kraft and Unilever marketing executive David Wood was summoned from his position as Tesco commercial director in Hungary to launch a fresh campaign against rivals in fmcg and food as UK marketing director. He replaced Carolyn Bradley, who moved to a new global position as group brand director, reporting to deputy CEO and chief marketing officer Tim Mason.
“We really value the work the Red Brick Road has done for us and will continue to do on our trade communications, which represents a major part of our marketing work,” said Matt Atkinson, Tesco’s group marketing and digital officer.
“During the time we have worked together, the way brands and consumers engage has changed and it seems to be a good opportunity for us both to step back and take a fresh look.”
Paul Hammersley, managing partner at the Red Brick Road, said: “We completely respect Tesco’s decision to review their needs at the brand level at this time of great change for their business, but obviously believe that we have all the resources and thinking they need here under one roof.”