Royal Mail appoints the7stars to handle media business

royal mail 2Royal Mail has handed its UK media planning and buying business to independent agency the7Stars following a competitive pitch handled by The Aperto Partnership.

Havas Media Group was the incumbent agency, having held the account since 2016.

The appointment, which takes effect early next year, comes at a challenging time for the postal giant, whose parent company International Distributions Services recently reported a first-half loss of £57m as higher costs and disruptions arising from strikes by its postal workers put a strain on its finances.

It expects full-year adjusted operating loss for Royal Mail of around £350m to £450m.

Royal Mail has been locked in a bitter dispute with the Communication Workers Union, over pay and operation changes for months.

Having already staged walk-outs in late November and early December, impacting the Black Friday shopping weekend, CWU members are now striking in the lead-up to Christmas, including Christmas Eve, one of the business’ busiest days of the year.

With the company reportedly losing up to £1m a day for every strike day, it is not known when any new advertising activity will break.

Royal Mail’s has worked with a number of marketing agencies across the group, including MBAstack and Abbott Mead Vickers BBDO and M&C Saatchi.

The7stars managing partner Nick Maddison said: “We are delighted to be working with Royal Mail – an advertiser with a rich heritage and an ambitious future. This was a refreshingly thorough pitch process with learnings at every stage, so we are ready to hit the ground running in 2023.”

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