The main health education agency for the French government, the National Institute for Health Education and Prevention, is to put upward of €30 million ($30.1m; £19.01m) of its advertising business into review during 2003.

The move has been triggered by the agency’s metamorphosis from a non-governmental body to the public sector, affecting more than a dozen high profile health budgets and several of the nation’s leading ad shops.

The individual accounts are said to be worth much more than their estimated value of $3m-$5m annually, thanks to the widespread exposure shops gain for their creative work from substantial free public service TV and radio airtime, plus copious free print inserts.

Accounts already under the hammer are anti-tobacco advertising (incumbent Havas-owned BETC Euro RSCG); the anti-drug campaigns (Euro RSCG Corporate); alcohol awareness (Omnicom’s CLM/BBDO; and AIDS prevention (Interpublic Group’s Lowe Alice).

Other accounts expected to go walkabout include vaccination advocacy handled by Publicis Groupe’s Saatchi & Saatchi; and nutrition promotion via WPP Group network Young & Rubicam.

Media planning/buying activities, currently in the grasp of Omnicom’s OMD France, are also set to go out to tender. The review process will be formalized in the early part of next year.

Data sourced from:; additional content by WARC staff