Extensive Visa review ends in minor changes

Visa has reappointed all its incumbent corporate and product PR agencies across Europe after an extensive repitch, but has cut its Belgian, Dutch, Swedish and Turkish contracts from retainers to projects.

Visa has reappointed all its incumbent corporate and product PR

agencies across Europe after an extensive repitch, but has cut its

Belgian, Dutch, Swedish and Turkish contracts from retainers to

projects.



After nearly three months, during which six agency networks were asked

to go through a series of hoops including detailed discussions and a

formal pitch, Visa chief operating officer Karel Plasman has now decided

not to make any extensive changes.



The decision follows the departure of European PR chief Sue Curtis days

after the agency review was launched (PR Week, 28 May). Her role is

being handled by external communications manager Stacy Torbit, until

Curtis is replaced.



Cohn and Wolfe will continue to co-ordinate Visa’s European agencies

from London, as well as hold its UK and Italian briefs. Other agencies

whose accounts are unchanged are: Burson-Marsteller in France and

Germany and Shandwick affiliate SAE de Relaciones Publicas in Spain.



Meanwhile, Image in Turkey, Bikker in the Netherlands, Belgian agency

Interel Marien and Sweden’s Rikta have seen the basis of their contracts

change from retainer to ad hoc projects.



The only new agency appointed is Ketchum, which is to handle a project

in the UK later this year. The details of the project are still under

wraps.



Torbit said: ’The review was a purchasing-driven initiative. We’ve

looked at what agencies charge, so we have a closer handle on what we

spend.’



She declined to comment on Visa’s overall PR budget but added that the

decision to reappoint incumbents had not been driven by Curtis’

departure.



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