AMSTERDAM — Philips has selected Omnicom following a global review of its $300m PR, creative and media duties, PRovoke Media has learned. 

The decision comes after Philips invited holding groups to contest the business in January of this year. In March, Business Insider reported that WPP had been dropped from the process, ending Ogilvy's decade-long run as Philips' advertising agency. 

Dentsu, which retained media duties for Philips' domestic appliances business, relinquished its hold on the majority of global media buying a few weeks ago, leaving PR incumbent Omnicom, along with IPG and Havas as the final holding groups in the fray.

The digital and performance media responsibilities currently held with WPP will be transitioned and consolidated with Omnicom following the review, which was run by R3.

Omnicom will significantly expand its existing PR relationship with Philips, for which it has handled communications duties since 2009. Omnicom PR Group initially landed the business by establishing a purpose-built unit called OneVoice, led by FleishmanHillard and Ketchum, and featuring sister financial and healthcare specialists.

In a statement, Philips confirmed that Omnicom had been chosen as its "global integrated creative, media and communications agency partner" and that "subsequent to the final agreement, Philips will work with a team assembled from the best of Omnicom, led by TBWA for creative, OMD for media and FleishmanHillard and Ketchum for communications, alongside talent and capabilities from Interbrand, Critical Mass and Omnicom Precision Marketing Group (OPMG)."

Lorraine Barber-Miller, chief marketing and e-commerce officer at Philips, said: “As we look to extend our leadership as a health technology solutions provider, Omnicom will be an important part of our world-class marketing capabilities, helping us to deliver personalized, differentiating customer experiences.

"We continue to advance digital-first, always-on engagement and e-commerce strategies that enable us to meet our customers where and how they want to be engaged, bringing Philips’ brand purpose – improving people’s health and well-being through meaningful innovation – to life.”

John Wren, chairman and CEO of Omnicom Group, added: “We are delighted to be named the integrated agency partner for Philips and to help the company navigate the challenges and opportunities ahead.

During an intense pitch process, we were able to leverage the strength of our agencies in a model that connects creativity, culture and technology to help Philips build a category of one in the changing health technology industry. We are proud to be Philips’ partner in this important, new chapter of their history.”

The pitch was the first competitive review of the PR business since OneVoice was formed under the leadership of Karen van Bergen, who went on to become OPRG's first chief executive and is now dean of Omnicom University.

After Philips spun off its €7 billion lighting division in 2016 – rebranded as Signify in 2018 – the new company conducted an agency review, with much of the PR work assigned to Ketchum, which had already worked with the division as part of the OneVoice alliance.

The remainder of Philips, which focuses on its core healthcare technology business, is understood to be largely led by FleishmanHillard. In 2017, Philips shares were reclassified by the FTSE under the healthcare category rather than industrials.

Additional reporting by Maja Pawinska Sims