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Skincare Giant Beiersdorf Sends Its U.S. Media Account to OMD

This article was originally published by Adweek.

German skincare brand Beiersdorf, whose products include Aquaphor, Eucerin and, most prominently, Nivea, has awarded its U.S. media planning and buying account to OMD after a competitive review that lasted several months.

The Omnicom network effectively won the business back from Dentsu’s Carat, which picked it up in a 2010 review.

“We were immediately impressed with OMD. As one of the world’s largest agencies, their capabilities and insight, along with their holistic approach to communications planning, are completely in line with our agenda to advance our brand presence in the US,” said the client’s general manager for North America Alvaro Alonso.

According to several sources who spoke to Adweek, the incumbent unsuccessfully defended its account in a review that also included both OMD and a GroupM “solution” consisting of experts from multiple agencies within the WPP network.

Spokespeople for Carat and GroupM declined to comment.

This news marks OMD’s first major account win under CMO Laurel Rossi, who quietly joined the network earlier this year after holding similar roles at Havas Life and indie shop Rauxa.

According to a party with knowledge of the review process, Beiersdorf—like so many clients— looks to shift its focus toward digital, cross-channel and performance-based media in order to better measure the effectiveness of its campaigns, many of which have been based in print and more traditional mediums.

The company also plans to expand. Sales of Nivea deodorant, its single largest product line, have declined in recent years, and Beiersdorf recently moved to make up for that loss by leaning more heavily on product lines like La Prairie skin care and Tesa, maker of adhesives for cars and electronics.

Beiersdorf has seen its sales grow in China, recently announcing a new partnership with ecommerce company NetEase Kaola in the interest of increasing cross-border business.

Kantar Media has Beiersdorf spending approximately $53 million on paid media in the U.S. last year. One source close to the pitch, however, claims the total is closer to the $100 million listed for the account in 2010, when it went to Carat.

The cosmetics industry in general has seen significant decreases in overall media spending over the past several years after peaking in 2015.