Telstra announces new agency partnerships with +61, Bear Meets Eagle On Fire and TBWA


Brent Smart: “We have big creative ambitions and this is about the best talent and thinking from three agencies at the top of their game”

Telstra has announced its new brand and marketing agency partnership.

After completing a thorough review, ‘+61’ has been appointed as the new creative partnership formed to lead its brand.

+61 is a bespoke partnership bringing together the world-class thinking and creativity of independent creative studio Bear Meets Eagle On Fire, powered by the full integrated capability of TBWA and Telstra’s existing media agency OMD.

+61 will form a seamlessly integrated way of working on the Telstra business.

Telstra is now moving away from a traditional agency roster with specialist agencies that focus on brand, customer communications and retail scopes.

Brent Smart, Telstra’s chief marketing officer, said: “Firstly, I would like to thank The Monkeys, CHEP and DDB for many years of partnership and the contribution they have made to Telstra’s business.”

“We are excited to build something new in the Australian market with +61. This partnership will give us the best of both worlds – an independent creative agency powered by a network agency; the creative vision of the team at Bear Meets Eagle On Fire combined with the strategic and integrated capabilities of TBWA. It will allow us to achieve a new level of creative and media integration, with our exceptional media partner OMD the third and equal partner in the model.

“This is not just another standalone one-client agency built to deliver efficiencies. We have big creative ambitions and this is about the best talent and thinking from three agencies at the top of their game, collaborating on our business as one team with one commercial arrangement.

Micah Walker, founder Bear Meets Eagle On Fire, said: “Partnering with Brent, TBWA and OMD on such an iconic brand – and putting creativity and thinking at the very heart of something custom-designed, was an opportunity we couldn’t say no to. It’s a huge honour for all of us at Bear to be considered for such an ambitious assignment. We can’t wait to get into it.”

Paul Bradbury, CEO TBWA Australia and New Zealand, said: “Brent and the Telstra team’s creative ambition and genuine desire to do things differently make this a very special opportunity for us all. Our partnership with one of the world’s most exciting creative independents, Bear Meets Eagle on Fire, and Australia’s best media agency and Omnicom family member, OMD, we believe is a force multiplier. And like Micah, we can’t wait to get started.”

Peter Horgan, CEO Australia and New Zealand, Omnicom Media Group, adds: “OMD has been a long-term partner to Telstra and we feel privileged to be part of a future facing alliance to support through the exciting challenges ahead.”

Telstra and +61 will commence work together from December 2023.

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