There were rumours of a few hearty celebrations at Ogilvy yesterday and while nothing has been able to be confirmed, it seems the frivolity is on the back of news that it has, in line with most predictions, retained the big Auckland Council account, beating out Colenso BBDO/.99 and DDB. Standby for an update.
None of the parties would talk directly about the pitch process and they are all bound by confidentiality agreements anyway. But they did send through written statements.
Shelley Watson, manager communications and public affairs
Auckland Council has been through a comprehensive and robust procurement process to appoint an agency to handle a wide range of council communications with residents and ratepayers, across all dimensions of the media, in the most cost-effective way.
After a fair, competitive process, Ogilvy/Designworks has been selected as the recommended vendor for Auckland Council. The services they will provide include digital, direct, brand, advertising, creative and event communications, including for the 21 local boards and some council-controlled organisations.
The council now has the capability to service the diverse and complex communications requirements of Auckland Council, one of the largest local bodies in Australasia.
Aucklanders want to make the most of their city – which includes everything from making sure their rubbish is put out on the right day, using their local library, giving their views on turning Auckland into the world’s most liveable city, and everything inbetween.
Auckland Council has a statutory obligation to communicate effectively – but also to involve, engage and consult Aucklanders.
The procurement process was carried out in accordance with Auckland Council’s procurement manual, was transparent and equitable to all participants, and provided a competitive environment to ensure value for ratepayers. A probity auditor had oversight over the process and is satisfied that all parties were treated fairly. Independent due diligence was also carried out.
Greg Partington, managing director, Ogilvy
Auckland Council really tested us on our creative methodology as well as our capability.
We are proud of our integrated offering, providing strong strategy, strong creative and a best in class engine room, all under one roof.
The creation of a new Auckland Council brings new opportunities to engage with the council’s myriad stakeholders and we relish the challenge this poses for the council’s communications partner.
We appreciate that the new Auckland Council is looking for a step change.
Len Brown and the Auckland Council have developed a vision for Auckland to be the world’s most liveable city – and we look forward to bringing that to life in innovative strategies and creative executions that do justice to our amazing city.
Justin Mowday, managing director, DDB.
We have been informed that our pitch for the Auckland Council account was unsuccessful," says DDB's managing director Justin Mowday. "The business remains with the incumbent agency. Naturally we're disappointed, especially given the feedback on our creative, talent and strategy was extremely positive. We wish Auckland City Council all the best none the less.
In some ways, the result of the pitch, which was thought to be pretty massive in terms of the work required from all the competing agencies, isn't too surprising. The Council is a big machine and it needs a big machine like Ogilvy for all its retail delivery. Rumours abound that DDB won more of the 'challenges', but other rumours abound that Ogilvy was told its creative work was 10 percent better than its rivals. Of course, cost is a big concern for a public entity, so that obviously came into play, and with the amount of work required, so is the availability of a production hub, which both Ogilvy (and .99) could offer. Also, with an account of this size and the logistic nightmare of an agency change, especially for a new organisation whose performance will be put under the spotlight, perhaps the decision was also partially based on ease.