Market sources told PRmoment India that Wal-Mart India has sent out requests for pitches for its PR business. Currently, the agency handling PR for Wal-Mart in India is Creation, a global communications agency that is part of the CMGRP group that also owns Weber Shandwick.
Sources said that Wal-Mart was expected to go in for a pitch as the current agency’s account is up for renewal in summer of 2015 (June). This is a routine two year request that goes out from the procurement department.
The account earlier is believed to have been valued at over 1 crore rupees. Wal-Mart opened its first cash and carry store in India in partnership with Bharti Retail in 2008. The joint venture broke up in 2013 formally in the wake of an internal investigation under the Foreign Corrupt Practices Act in the US. Since the probe in 2012, Wal-Mart’s expansion into its now wholly owned wholesale cash and carry business has been at a halt.
Earlier this month, Wal-Mart India appointed Ashwin Mittal as chief financial officer and Javier Rojo to lead real estate expansion and business development. Wal-Mart India also stated in 2014 that it plans to scale up its cash and carry stores called ‘Best Price’ from the current 20 to 50 by 2019.
The overall size of the business will naturally affect the retainer on offer.
Among the agencies that have been invited to fill in the RFP is Perfect Relations. It is very likely that other top PR agencies in India have also been invited to do so.