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Sears hands $740m media account to Havas agency

NEW YORK - Department store chain Sears has handed its $740m (£370m) media buying and planning account to Havas-owned MPG.

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MPG won the business after a pitch against MEC Interaction, Carat, Horizon Media and the incumbent, WPP Group's Mindshare.

Sears, which is the fourth-largest retailer in the US with around 3,800 stores across the country, announced it was holding a pitch for its media account last month.

MPG will now take responsibility for all of the chain's planning and buying across TV, radio, magazines and online platforms for Sears and sister chain Kmart, which merged with Sears in November 2004.

Mindshare said it was disappointed to lose the Sears account after 20 years, describing the retailer as "an American icon", however the loss does not affect WPP Group's holding of the Sears creative account, which will continue to be handled by Young & Rubicam.

Maureen McGuire, chief marketing officer at Sears, said: "We believe this arrangement with MPG aligns us with an organisation that can help us connect with and profitably serve our customers and achieve our goal of being a more efficient and effective company."

MPG has described the Sears account win as a "milestone" for the agency.

Last month Kmart moved its $200m (£100m) CRM and ad account to DraftFCB without a pitch.

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