Tire manufacturer Michelin North America has called a surprise review of its US brand account. Billings are estimated at $35 million.

The move threatens to displace seventeen-year incumbent DDB Worldwide, which diplomatically announced it would be “thrilled” if the company asked it to pitch for the business. However, Michelin’s vp–marketing Scott Clark was giving nothing away, stating “we have not identified who is in or who is out.”

Explaining the decision to hold a review, Clark said that the goal was to “expand our marketing strategy” to involve “one-to-one marketing, and doing that in a more personal way.” Michelin, continued Clark, wanted to move “beyond just a pure mass communications effort to a more integrated and relationship marketing strategy.”

The review will not affect the overseas Michelin business held by offices of DDB in Mexico, Colombia, Canada, South Africa and Venezuela.

News source: Advertising Age - Daily Deadline; New York Times