The B.C. government paid $1.427m of its $5.7m BC Jobs Plan provincial advertising budget to Cossette Communications for the campaign’s creative work, with the media buy costing the remaining $3.64 million, according to Freedom of Information-obtained documents.
The Vancouver branch of Canadian firm Cossette worked on the campaign in August 2011 for Christy Clark’s September 22 launch. A document dated January 27, 2012 said $1,427,291 had been spent so far, including $863,848 for production.
Included in the $3.64 million media buy, purchased through the Vancouver office of international media agency Vizeum, was $1,114.76 for Facebook ads running from December 19-February 7.
Vizeum is the province’s media buying agency of record, except for domestic tourism advertising. Cossette is one of six advertising services suppliers on a corporate supply arrangement with the government’s Purchasing Services Branch.
A December 22, 2011, memo by Denise Champion, executive director of corporate services at Government Communications and Public Engagement (GCPE), says, “Under the corporate supply arrangement, contracts are not entered into on a project-by-project basis. Suppliers are required to submit draw-downs that provide estimated costs for various components of the project.”
The Vancouver office of Vizeum is ultimately owned by Aegis Media Ltd., part of Aegis Group PLC, which boasts clients like Coca-Cola, BMW, Sears, 20th Century Fox and Panasonic.
GCPE, a division of the Ministry of Labour, Citizens' Services and Open Government, was formerly known as the Public Affairs Bureau. For the 2010-2011 fiscal year, it reported a budget of $26.492 million.