Ambitious supermarket chain Morrisons has handed fresh consumer PR, corporate and public affairs briefs - believed to be worth at least £750,000 - to Omnicom agencies Porter Novelli and Kreab Gavin Anderson.
The work will be divided between the consultancies, with Porter Novelli working on consumer activity and Kreab Gavin Anderson handling corporate PR and public affairs.
A hotly contested four-way pitch also included representations from The Red Consultancy, Hill & Knowlton and Good Relations.
Red had support from sister agency Citigate Dewe Rogerson, which previously held the corporate account and continues to work on Morrisons' financial PR.
Good Relations had held the public affairs retainer, while retained consumer shop Lexis declined to repitch.
The account is the first major win for Porter Novelli under the stewardship of newly installed UK managing director Sally Ward. She took over the role earlier this year from outgoing MD Jean Wyllie, who had been with the agency for ten years.
'This is a huge win for us and particularly for the consumer practice,' admitted Ward. 'We have beaten the biggest and the best in the industry.'
Morrisons' new chief executive Dalton Philips joined in March and immediately undertook a review of the business, which included a wide-ranging comms rethink (PRWeek, 31 March).
The newly appointed PR consultancies have been briefed to build on the brand's 'Eat fresh for less' mantra. They will also aim to promote the supermarket's professed commitment to British farmers.
Porter Novelli has just bolstered its consumer division with the appointment of Jo Patterson as consumer practice leader. She joins from her role as head of consumer at Lexis PR.
MORRISONS IN NEWS
8 June: Morrisons lures Waitrose number two Richard Hodgson as commercial director
6 May: Slowdown in sales growth for the Q1 2010, to 0.8 per cent, down from six per cent at the end of January
11 March: Morrisons reports a 30 per cent rise in annual profit
27 January: Dalton Philips is named new chief executive
18 November 2009: CEO Marc Bolland announces he is leaving to join M&S.