R3 founder Goh Shufen breaks the silence on the Singtel media pitch

Following a reaction piece run where several marketers expressed unhappiness on Singtel’s latest media pitch, which asked for agencies to provide an estimate of how much business they can provide Amobee, R3 founder Goh Shufen has released a statement.

She told Marketing that in any competitive review, both agencies and clients need to make long term commitments that make sense for both parties.  Marketing understands that currently the scope of the appointed media agency is to oversee overall media planning and work closely with Amobee, which will handle digital capabilities in-house.

While Goh could not comment on the pitch, she said in a statement: “We expect agencies that enter into such pitches to take into account the interests and concerns of their various clients. The criteria for assessment include the agencies’ track record and  ability to leverage their technical competencies in digital marketing."

She added that as the evaluation is in progress, R3 and Singtel are unable to comment on the outcome except to say that two agencies are in the final selection round. She added that both Singtel and R3 urges the agencies to clarify directly if they have any concerns.

Marketing understands these agencies are incumbent Havas, and OMD. However, both agencies cannot comment on the issue because of a signed non-disclosure agreement with Singtel.

Ahead of the news of Singtel media pitch breaking, Goh told Marketing during an interview that many clients today are also hiring in-house digital experts to better understand the complexities of programmatic and digital ad buys.  Moreover, she added that it is commonly known that all media agencies leverage their aggregated volume from their pool of clients to trade with media platforms, both digital and traditional at more competitive terms.

At the end of the day, the media scene today is more complex than ever, and as such “this trust needs to be backed by more rigorous accountability process on both sides."

“Clients are promised, and therefore expect, media agencies to act on their best interests. Increasingly, this trust has become less implicit because of the transparency and fraud issues surrounding digital media trading. The world’s top two advertisers P&G and Unilever are very vocal in driving this agenda,” she said.