Omnicom halts Channel 5 spend

Channel 5: Omnicom has made group-wide decision to redirect spend to ITV for the rest of the year
Channel 5: Omnicom has made group-wide decision to redirect spend to ITV for the rest of the year

Philippe Dauman, the chief executive of Viacom, has confirmed Channel 5 will retain an independent sales force, as the broadcaster goes into the second half of the year facing a £30 million adspend deficit.

In an interview with Campaign, Dauman said the US TV giant had agreed a deal to buy Channel 5 from Northern & Shell for £450 million "on the basis that it will continue to handle its own ad sales".

He said: "Our focus will be on communicating the comprehensive portfolio Channel 5 and Viacom’s channels can offer on air and online."

Meanwhile, Omnicom, through its media trading division OPera, has made a group-wide decision to halt any media spend with Channel 5 until the end of the year, redirecting all of its activity to ITV.

One source close to the situation said: "This does not look like your usual horse-trading around TV spend. There is no sign of trying to land a better deal. Clients have been told they will not be advertising with Channel 5 until 2015."

OPera spent more than £50 million on Channel 5 last year, according to Nielsen, with nearly £30 million in the second half of the year.

Rival agency groups are aware of the move and are said to be eyeing up Omnicom clients as potential new-business opportunities.

One trading leader said: "If you’re McDonald’s, Sony Music or Waitrose, you will probably be fairly relaxed about ITV being able to meet your audience needs. But if you’re a kids brand like Hasbro, for example, not being around Channel 5’s Milkshake! come September is going to be a big problem."

A Channel 5 spokeswoman said: "Channel 5 can confirm that no bookings have been received from OPera on behalf of its clients for July until the end of the year. This is a private matter between Channel 5, OPera and its clients, and no further comment will be made at this time."


Get the latest marketing, advertising, media and digital jobs to your inbox.

Create an alert now
Brand Republic Jobs
Thousands of jobs across advertising, creative, marketing and media

Just published

Feel you're missing out?

Sign up

The Wall Blog

From our partners