AB InBev is not reviewing media accounts, retains Vizeum in Canada

Vizeum confirmed that the account will remain with its agency, but little is known about how long that will be the case.

Brewing giant Anheuser-Busch InBev, the corporation behind Budweiser, Corona and many more brews, confirmed that it will not go forward with a review of its global media agency relationships, despite acknowledging that its previous contracts had initially been set to end this year.

Plans for an account review were first reported by global trades in December 2019, reportedly part of a consolidation play, although AB InBev never publicly confirmed that it was in the midst of a review.

However, a spokesperson for the brand recently confirmed that the brand was originally scheduled to review its media this year, but that it would not go forward with those plans and that it has officially retained its three incumbent agencies. This includes Vizeum for North America (as well as Europe and Africa). It also worked with Starcom for Asia-Pacific and parts of Latin America (it splits the region with MediaCom).

No details were given on how long AB InBev would stick with its incumbent agencies.

A representative for Vizeum parent company Dentsu Aegis Network confirmed to MiC that there is no current review and that Vizeum continues to hold the account. However, they did not comment on any previously scheduled review plans on the part of AB InBev.

Vizeum has held North American media duties for AB InBev since 2017 – during which it also looked to consolidate its media across fewer agencies. That review lasted more than six months and, in Canada, saw IPG Mediabrands hand over the reins to Vizeum.

Some agencies previously told MiC that pitching activity had been halted in the face of the pandemic, although other advertisers like Desjardins and Rogers have forged ahead with reviews during COVID.