One of the world’s biggest advertisers, German carmaker Volkswagen, has announced it is launching a global creative agency review.
The brands’s CMO Jochen Sengpiehl outlined his vision for a more centralised agency model organised around regional hubs at a press briefing in Berlin yesterday.
VW’s creative is currently held by DDB in Australia who told B&T it was unaware of any review.
Spokesperson said: “DDB has a very close working relationship with Volkswagen both in Australia and globally. Any potential agency review would be an opportunity for us to strengthen our role as a worldwide partner for this amazing brand.”
The media is done by PHD globally, however, it is understood that it isn’t under review.
Sengpiehl wants to consolidate the account into big regional hubs covering Europe, China, North America, South America and the rest of the world, which would include Australia.
Volkswagen – whose brands include VW, Audi, Skoda and Porsche – are the planet’s sixth biggest advertiser with an annual spend close to $US7 billion ($A9 billion).
Among his many plans, Sengpiehl said he wanted to get better “efficiencies” out of its media spend. “We’ve spent far too much money on paid media in the past, and we want to change that,” Sengpiehl told German newspaper Horizont.
In other Volkswagen news, the car marker yesterday announced it would overhaul its famed logo as it prepares for the electric-car era. It’s also in response to the damage done to the brand following 2015’s infamous emissions cheating scandal.
Sengpiehl said the new logo would be unveiled some time in 2018 as the company rolls out a new fleet of electric vehicles to the global market.
In a sign of the times, Sengpiehl said the logo needed to be updated so it could work on car fronts as well as smartphone screens.
Interestingly, Sengpiehl said recent damage to the brand hadn’t just come from the emissions scandal but from the brand trying to be “too German”.
“The big challenge is: How do we get people into the electric world. We want people to have fun with us. We need to get more colorful,” Sengpiehl said.