CHICAGO: Dow has selected GolinHarris and Interpublic Group to lead the chemical company’s corporate reputation work following a two-month long agency search.Dow invited the four top holding companies to pitch for the account, eventually narrowing down the competition to WPP, led by Burson-Marsteller, and IPG, led by GolinHarris. The RFP was relatively unique within the increasingly popular model of holding company pitches, in that the business was driven by the holding companies' PR agencies rather than their advertising agencies.
"In our case, [Dow] contacted GolinHarris, and we brought in Foote Cone Belding as our partner," said GH CEO Fred Cook. "Usually, the context on these holding company efforts is the ad agency is in the lead, and PR gets brought along as part of the team."
Cook said that WPP, IPG, Omnicom, and Publicis were all involved in the RFP process initially.
In a statement, Dow said IPG will "help accelerate its integrated, corporate reputation strategy on a global basis." The company said it "wants key stakeholders to better understand how its products, people and actions contribute to human progress."
Cook said that while GH is now Dow's AOR in the field of corporate reputation, he did not know specifically what agency was being replaced.
Dow corporate media relations contact Terri McNeil did not respond to requests for comment before press time.
The Chicago offices of GH and FCB will lead the account, but work will be done globally. Cook said he did not know how large the account team will be, but described Dow as "a very significant client."
The account's value has been reported to be at least $25 million, but Cook would not comment on the figures.