$3.2 Bil. GM Media to Starcom MediaVest

NEW YORK General Motors has selected Publicis Groupe’s Starcom MediaVest, for its $3.2 billion domestic media business following a review, the client confirmed.

The incumbents were Interpublic Group’s GM Mediaworks in Warren, Mich., and LCI in New York, which handle national and regional buying, respectively. Those shops defended in a shootout against Chicago-based Starcom.

The automaker spent $3.2 billion on domestic measured media last year, per Nielsen Monitor-Plus. (That figure includes more than $600 million in dealer association advertising, which was included in the review.)

Starcom already handled GM outdoor advertising, worth about $30 million. That portion of the business was not in play.

Overall U.S. media planning duties, with Starcom’s GM Planworks, were likewise not in review.

Planworks, headed by president Dennis Donlin, will now be expanded to handle the new GM buying assignment, and essentially become a full-serivce media company dedicated to the automaker’s account.

“We will be transitioning our media buying activities from GM Mediaworks to Planworks in the coming months. The transition is scheduled to be complete by Oct. 1,” said Betsy Lazar, general director of advertising and media operations at GM, in a statement.

“The consolidation of the buying unit with the Planworks organization will achieve additional operating efficiencies and will improve our ability to act on new solutions to address GM media and marketing issues,” she said.

Key GM brands include Buick, Cadillac, Chevrolet, GMC and Hummer.