The verdict is out. Samsung India has appointed IPG Mediabrand's Lodestar as its media agency on record (AoR).
While Lodestar spokespersons remained unavailable for comment, sources close to the development confirmed the account movement to afaqs!
As per sources, the winning Interpublic Group agency will handle the entire portfolio of the brand in India including mobile phones, TV/audio/video, cameras/camcorder, home appliances, PCs and printers. The account size is estimated to be upwards of Rs 400 crore.
This review process was one of the most talked about pitches of the year, in part, because of the brand itself, and in part, because of its whopping media spend.
It is pertinent to note here that with this decision, the brand has moved its business from one large media conglomerate to another. Publicis Groupe's Starcom MediaVest Group had won the global business of Samsung in 2007 and was handling it till Samsung India called for a media pitch earlier this year. However, it is not known yet if this is a global movement.
Samsung India had recently announced the launch of Galaxy Note 3, the latest update to its Note product line. Additionally, it also introduced Galaxy Note 10.1 (2014 Edition -balancing productivity and powerful content creation in one portable tablet device), Galaxy Tab 3 series and Galaxy S4 smartphone range this year. Besides, it reiterated its commitment to the enterprise and small and medium-sized businesses (SMBs) with its foray into the A3 multi-function printer segment in India.
On the brand ambassador front, Samsung has collaborated with a number of Bollywood actors in the recent past including Shriya Saran, Priyanka Chopra and Amir Khan.
Early this year, Samsung was voted as the 'India's Buzziest Brand', by a poll-based survey conducted by afaqs!, on the general buzz generated by and around brands. While technically, Samsung would be classified as a marketer of electronic goods, buzz around the brand can be tied back to the interest around its mobile handsets.
After facing its share of obstacles in the handset category, Samsung, in 2009, it launched three ranges of feature phones -- Corby, Star and Wave. That year, it jumped from No 49 to No 26 in the Buzzies. Soon after, it introduced the Galaxy range of handsets, which became a spectacular success worldwide, having sold 100 million units. After dropping to No 18 in 2011, it got into single digits for the first time last year, at No 5. It got to the No 1 position this year in the most convincing way possible. It was voted to the top on the popular vote, leaving runner up, Facebook, way behind. Among the jurors, four out of five voted for Samsung, the highest for any brand other than Airtel, which got the same score.
For the record, Cheil Worldwide is handling the creative duties of Samsung.
Globally, Samsung employs around 270,000 people across 79 countries with annual sales of US$187.8 billion.