Bharti Airtel, India's largest mobile carrier by revenue and subscribers, has awarded its media mandate to GroupM, reports The Economic Times. GroupM has bagged the account replacing Madison as the media manager of the brand.
The telecom major had invited a pitch in November 2014, including Sam Balsara-led Madison World, which has been handling the account for the past 11 years. According to people in the know, other agencies in the fray included one of GroupM agencies, Lodestar, Dentsu Aegis Network, OMD and ZenithOptimedia.
In 2010, Madison Media had been retained by Airtel as its media AOR. Post that, Madison had also backed the media mandate of Airtel in Sri Lanka, however it is yet to be confirmed whether the Sri Lanka business has also changed hands.
As per estimates, the size of Airtel's media account is upwards of Rs 400 crore, with estimated spends of Rs 350 crore in above-the-line (ATL) advertising and Rs 50 crore on out-of-home ( OOH) media.
Meanwhile, Milestone Brandcom, which is the outdoor unit of Dentsu Aegis Media, has won the outdoor mandate. The firm's creative mandate is split between WPP agency J Walter Thompson, Dentsu Aegis Network agency Taproot and Cartwheel Creative.