Hyundai ad agency Innocean set to hire Bell Pottinger for PR brief

Advertising agency Innocean Worldwide Europe is set to appoint Bell Pottinger as it seeks to distinguish itself from the competition.

Hyundai: Work with Innocean
Hyundai: Work with Innocean

The agency is understood to have beaten three others in a pitch for the retained European brief, which will focus on helping form a three-year PR strategy.

Innocean Worldwide has a team of 1,300 staff based across the globe and works with a range of clients including Kia, Canon and Diageo, while the European arm covers nine markets.

However, earlier this year the agency came under fire after Hyundai pulled one of its online adverts showing a man's attempted suicide in his garage being thwarted by a zero emission engine.

Following protests and negative media coverage, Hyundai said it ‘sincerely apologises for the offensive viral video’.

One well-placed source said that the brief, which is not understood to be directly related to the controversy, was about showing ‘it is a through-the-line agency looking for bigger, better briefs'.

‘It wants to distinguish itself from the competition, and show it is working across all platforms,’ he added.

A Bell Pottinger spokesman confirmed the agency was in discussions but did not elaborate on the scope of work.

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