Saturday, May 1, 2010

AirAsia hands business to Mindshare

KUALA LUMPUR - AirAsia has handed its media business to Mindshare after a four-way pitch that involved Zenith, MPG and incumbent Carat.

A press statement from AirAsia said that the agency was appointed "for its synergy and strength of its global network, supported by its holding company, GroupM, which is similar to AirAsia’s brand presence worldwide."

According to this statement Mindshare "beat the other three for its outstanding creative ideas, exceptional value, global brand fit and support."

Kathleen Tan, regional head of commercial at Air Asia said that the airline believes that the media agency shares similar global traits with AirAsia.

"As AirAsia is fast expanding its route network across Asia and beyond with strong brand presence internationally, Mindshare, working with the GroupM network definitely has the right fit as they are globally strong and carries the strong media clout we need. This would ensure that the airline will be given the global top level commitment from the agency with exceptional creative expertise. We look forward to working with Mindshare Malaysia and its global network supported by GroupM in our commercial endeavors and are thrilled that they met our exact requirements during the pitch.”

Ashutosh Srivastava, regional head of Mindshare for Asia-Pacific said that the agency is "delighted to get the opportunity to partner Air Asia in growing its business."

"Air Asia is already an iconic brand in Asia and is aggressively building itself up as a global brand. The Tune group is an equally dynamic brand and rapidly expanding its footprint at this stage. We look forward to combining the best of our talent, creativity and technology to help them create breakthrough communications solutions”.

AirAsia which started operations in 2001 has grown its fleet from 2 to 92 aircraft to date and carried over 85 million passengers within a span of eight years.

The airline will embark on a regional media agency review following the success of this appointment in phases through the next few months.

AirAsia announced a pitch process in December. In an exclusive interview given to Media in December, AirAsia's head of commercial, Kathleen Tan, revealed that the budget carrier would be putting its media account up for pitch in 2010.
According to sources, the four agencies were briefed by the client from 3 to 5 March.
AirAsia concluded its last media review in May 2008 when it split the business between Carat and OMG, with a bigger share of the account going to Carat. It is believed that OMG later parted ways with the brand.
In January this year, AirAsia and Qantas Airways subsidiary, Jetstar, formed a historic alliance aimed at lowering costs and generating more competitive fares for travellers in this region.
The budget carrier's fiercest rival, Malaysia Airlines, concluded a high-profile review process in December last year and appointed Starcom to handle its media, displacing incumbent Mindshare.

By Asiya Bakht


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