It will be the first retained consumer PR account since the chain was acquired by Sainsbury’s for £1.4bn last year.
Samantha Coon, Sainsbury’s head of consumer PR – lifestyle, told PRWeek: "Previously [Argos] had agencies but they tended to work on a project basis. We’ve taken the decision that it’s better to have a retained agency."
The pitch process is at the halfway stage, Coon said, with the winning agency set to be announced soon.
She declined to identify the shortlisted agencies, which were contacted about the brief in the spring. Coon added: "It’s a very detailed consumer brief. It covers all our core areas."
Coon was given an expanded role at the group following the Argos acquisition, which led to an integration of the Sainsbury’s and Argos consumer PR functions. She now oversees non-food consumer PR across the group, leading a team of four at Sainsbury’s and the same number at Argos.
Coon reports to Sainsbury’s corporate affairs director Louise Evans, who was profiled by PRWeek last year.