Moderna has named an Interpublic Group cross-agency team from Dxtra Health Integrated Solutions as its global AOR.
After an RFP process that began in November but was delayed due to the Omicron variant of COVID-19, Moderna selected Dxtra Health over three other participants in February. Before starting work in March, Dxtra Health met with Moderna’s country-specific general managers.
“We never want our general managers to work with an agency until they’re comfortable,” said Kate Cronin, Moderna’s chief brand officer.
The Dxtra Health team, led by Laura Schoen, chief healthcare officer, is supporting Moderna on employee engagement, thought leadership, disease awareness, executive visibility and product communications. This includes comms for its COVID-19 vaccine, Spikevax, and the new Omicron-containing bivalent COVID booster candidate.
Dxtra’s team will include talent from Weber Shandwick, Golin and Jack Health. Holding company Interpublic Group rebranded its Constituency Management Group network, which contains the bulk of its PR firms as well as marketing specialist shops, as Dxtra in fall 2020. Led by CEO Andy Polansky, Dxtra was set up around the five core brands of Weber, Golin, sports marketing network Octagon, experiential shop Jack Morton and strategy, design and innovation shop FutureBrand.
Dxtra’s team is also helping on creative programs, generating awareness for Moderna’s mRNA technology as the company attempts to move away from being positioned with other pharmaceutical companies.
“[Moderna] is really a health technology company,” Cronin said. “We have a platform that can be applied across multiple diseases both for prevention and potentially therapeutics.”
Budget information was not disclosed.
Moderna recently worked with FTI Consulting and Ruder Finn on a project basis, but has consolidated its work with one global partner in Dxtra Health, said Cronin.
“We wanted to put everything under one umbrella and find a partner that worked at Moderna’s speed, which is fast,” she added.
Ruder Finn and FTI representatives declined to comment.
In May, Moderna hired Chris Ridley as VP of comms and media, a newly created role.
Moderna reported $6.1 billion in revenue in Q1 as its vaccine sales more than tripled over the same period of the prior year; net income also tripled to nearly $3.7 billion.