Nintendo Taps Initiative as Media Agency in the U.S.

By Megan Graham. Published on February 12, 2019, Advertising Age

Nintendo is about to switch up its media agency. The marketer has selected Interpublic Group of Cos.-owned Initiative as its new shop in the U.S. after a review, according to people familiar with the matter.

Publicis Media's Blue 449 is the incumbent on the account. The agency referred comment to the client.

Responding to a request for comment Monday, Nintendo said via email, "We have nothing to announce on this topic." Initiative also declined to comment.

Ad Age first reported the news of the review in July 2018.

Japan-headquartered Nintendo staged a comeback in 2017 with the release of its Switch, a crossover between a home-gaming console and portable gaming device, which retails for $299.99. But in January 2019, the marketer cut its outlook for annual Switch shipments — suggesting the console was struggling to attract a wider user base, Bloomberg reported earlier this year.

Nintendo still works with Publicis Groupe's Leo Burnett on creative.

Los Angeles-based External View Consulting Group managed the search process. External View could not be immediately reached for comment.

Nintendo Co. spent an estimated $73.8 million in measured media in the U.S. in 2017, according to Kantar Media.