EXCLUSIVE: Emirates has called a review of its advertising account for the Middle East and North Africa.
A number of agencies are believed to be pitching for the business including the Dubai- based airline’s incumbent agency of record Impact BBDO.
Chris Galanto, Emirates’ senior vice president for advertising, said: “We can confirm that we are reviewing our creative agency network for the MENA region and the pitch process is underway. We do not wish to comment further at this stage.”
Last August, Emirates appointed an interdisciplinary WPP team to handle its global branding and creative account. Team Air brought together staff from Grey’s London and New York offices, Rainey Kelly Campbell Roalfe/Y&R, Geometry Global, Hogarth and TNS. Grey London and Grey New York started developing brand communications for Emirates almost immediately, while RKCR/Y&R’s first work was launched around the Rugby World Cup, of which the airline is a global partner.
Emirates began its global branding and creative review in 2014. Before that, it worked with the Amsterdam-based independent agency Nomads from 2013.
WPP will be keen to add the Middle East and North Africa business to its global brief, with agency presentations understood to be scheduled to begin in early February.
In October last year, Rainey Kelly Campbell Roalfe/Y&R rolled out its first spot for Emirates featuring Hollywood actor Jennifer Aniston with the star seen searching for a shower on an aeroplane. She was horrified when told by the flight attendants that she was not on an Emirates plane as she had thought. Happily, the American actor later awakes in her private Emirates cabin and is then seen explaining her nightmare to the first class lounge’s bartender.
The former Friends actor became the face of the brand just before the airline announced the appointment of the bespoke WPP team to its global creative account. She will appear in a series of TV, digital and print ads.