Big sigh of relief at RPA as it hangs on to (most of) $1bn Honda US creative account

Conventional wisdom says that it’s not worth repitching for an account because it’s bound to go and all you’ll be left with is a big bill.

But maybe that’s wrong: LA-based RPA has hung on to most of the $1bn or so US Honda creative account: just as well as it’s had the business since it opened its doors in 1986 and Honda is still reckoned to account for about half its income.

It’s not all good news for RPA; the Acura brand, worth about $200m, has moved to Mullen in Boston. It’s worse news though for Crispin Porter and The Martin Agency who made it to the final round of pitches. MediaVest has won the media account, which also seems to have been with RPA, rather bizarrely.

Just last week HSBC decided to keep the bulk of its business with WPP’s JWT after an extended pitch (although WPP’s Grey and Publicis Groupe’s Saatchi & Saatchi picked up bits) while last year Unilever finished an extended media review with no material changes to its line-up of Mindshare and PHD.

So maybe clients are changing their ways. Or maybe the increasing influence of intermediaries is responsible. Such matchmakers may be more inclined to rate the efforts of the previous agency than a client on its own who has decided to look around.

And they earn a huge fee for leaving things (mostly) as they are. But that’s consultants for you.

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