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BBDO drops out of Singtel pitch, five per cent of agency let go

SingTel logoBBDO has pulled out of the pitch for SingTel, one of Singapore’s largest advertisers.

The announcement brings to an end a five-year relationship between client and agency.

Updated: BBDO is expected to make five per cent of the agency – 10 people – redundant as a result. Although around 30 staff worked on the SingTel business, most will be redeployed to other accounts. SingTel made up around 10 per cent of the agency’s revenue.

The news comes at a difficult time for BBDO, which lost key client Gillette to a global realignment in April.

The announcement from the agency:

SINGAPORE, 2nd August 2013 – Following a five-year relationship as the creative agency for SingTel, BBDO Singapore has stepped away from the current agency review.

Jean-Paul Burge, President for SEA and CEO Singapore, said: “We have enjoyed a very good relationship and produced some great work over the last five years for SingTel. In a challenging environment the brand stands out and we have made a significant contribution towards this. We will now refocus on our clients, people and creative product and wish both SingTel and their new creative partner all the very best.”

Allen Lew, Chief Country Officer Singapore, added: “We recognise BBDO’s efforts in helping to enhance the SingTel brand through many marketing campaigns over the last five years, including the recent Gordon Ramsay campaign, which was a big success. We have enjoyed a fruitful relationship with BBDO. But the time has come for new ideas and perspectives as we expand our business in a fast changing market. We remain open to working together again in the future.”

BBDO will continue to develop work for SingTel until the review and handover are completed.

BBDO won the SingTel business in 2007 after an eventful pitch. The agency was invited to re-join the review after Leo Burnett and Saatchi & Saatchi both pulled out. BBDO hadn’t made the shortlist.

BBDO took on the account from Y&R, which handled the business for 19 years.

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