Heineken global unveils new creative agency model, consolidates media buying

Heineken is moving all media buying and planning services to dentsu as of 1 January 2021. Dentsu Red Star, which currently holds the majority of Heineken global billings, will become the sole media agency, as Heineken evolves its media operating model. The move aims to maximise its global media investment to drive sustainable business growth.

As a partner, dentsu will be implementing a future media model allowing Heineken to access more specialist capabilities and talent to accelerate the growth of its brands. Publicis Groupe will retain media duties in its home country of France.

Peter Huijboom, CEO Dentsu media and global clients “We are delighted with Heineken’s decision to consolidate their global media services with dentsu. Over the last three years we have built a trusted partnership with Heineken, rooted in a track record of delivery and innovation, particularly in the acceleration of Heineken’s individualised data driven marketing ambition. We are excited about building a future media model together across the entire Heineken portfolio.”

On the creative side, Heineken together with Publicis Groupe, will be creating Le Pub, a new creative agency model headquartered in Amsterdam. With a team across Amsterdam and Milan and powered by Epsilon and Publicis Sapient, the new model will integrate creativity, data and brand experience for Heineken. A spokesperson told MARKETING-INTERACTIVE, this agency model is for Heineken global campaigns, which will be used in Asian markets.

Bram Westenbrink, global senior director Heineken said: “In today’s dynamic consumer environment, we need to be able to move quickly and be as relevant as we can for consumers. We are therefore adjusting our agency model. The new partnership with Le Pub is based on providing localised creativity at a global scale, with speed.”

According to the brand, the creation of Le Pub demonstrates that “innovation is at the heart of the Heineken brand’s marketing and communication strategies”.

“Innovative in both structure and approach, the new model will deliver greater agility, localisation and personalisation at scale for Heineken,” the release added

Bram Westenbrink, continued: “The global pandemic meant we had to pivot and work differently, which is what inspired us to design this new model. The partnership with Publicis will help us to drive growth, giving Heineken a sustainable competitive advantage. We are excited to get started.”

Bruno Bertelli, global creative director at Publicis WW and CEO of Le Pub: “With the creation of Le Pub, we are launching a new agency model, showcasing how we are uniquely positioned to unlock the alchemy of creative, data and tech to make experiences that impact people’s daily life. After almost a decade working with Heineken®, I’m positive they are the perfect client to launch it with.”

Publicis has also chosen a unique location of a bar in central Amsterdam to base this new client offer; a creative space that speaks to the very essence of Heineken. Le Pub is expected to open its doors on 1 January 2021.

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