Adbrands Weekly Update 8th July 2010
A weekly round up of key news about 
leading advertisers, agencies and mediaowners
 
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RECENTLY ADDED PROFILES

Procter and Gamble

Starcom MediaVest

Coca Cola

Young and Rubicam

Unilever

MediaEdge:CIA

Kraft Foods

BBDO

LOreal
DDB

OMD

Nike

TBWA

Sony

JWT

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Carat

McCann Erickson
Apple
Bartle Bogle Hegarty

Diageo

Ogilvy and Mather

Ford Motors

Mindshare

Verizon

ZenithOptimedia

Four of our favourite ads this week: 

Old Spice "Questions"
by Wieden & Kennedy

McDonalds "Weather"
by
Leo Burnett London

Canal+ "iPhone"
by
BETC Euro RSCG

California Milk Processors "Dentist"
by
Goodby Silverstein

Update only subscribers: click here to view Ads of the Week

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Hello ladies. How are you? Fantastic. Let's kick off with the follow-up to this year's Cannes Grand Prix winner for Film, which we featured here last week. The new Old Spice spot, Questions, is even more impressive, and not least because the whole thing was captured for real and in a single shot. Although admittedly it took 36 or 37 takes to get it just right. We like this ad even better than its predecessor. Wieden & Kennedy is the agency once more. Also, we thoroughly recommend this video interview with Old Spice Man Isaiah Mustafa on web channel G4. Mustafa, a real charmer, explains exactly how the shot was done. Swan dive...

... into the new McDonalds UK ad by Leo Burnett. Burnett's London outpost has turned out a string of top-notch and distinctively British spots for McDonalds over the past few years. This is another gem. McDonalds may be the world's biggest fast-feeder, but it takes the time and trouble to craft its creative output to suit each local market. Charming in every way. (See our McDonalds UK profile page for more local ads).

Now one for all iPhone obsessives. French pay TV service Canal+ launches its new iPhone app with another typically inventive spot from BETC Euro RSCG.

And finally, the latest instalment in Goodby Silverstein's Mootopia series for the California Milk Processor Board. Part of the long-running Got Milk? campaign, this series of ads shows life in the wonderful land of Mootopia where milk flows like water, a phenomenon that doesn't quite suit everyone...


In the news this past week: Brands & Advertisers

The UK media reported this week that Qatar Investment Authority is plotting a full takeover of supermarket retailer Sainsbury's. It is already the largest shareholder with a 26% holding. QIA originally launched a bid for the business in 2007, before pulling out because of the developing global credit crisis. QIA owns a number of other UK retailers, most notably Harrods, acquired earlier this year. Meanwhile Amazon launched its online grocery delivery service in the UK and Germany. Its move into the intensely competitive UK market was slightly surprising considering the already extensive offering provided by the country's three biggest supermarkets Tesco, Sainsburys and Asda. Amazon's announcement appeared to be timed to coincide with publication of the IPO prospectus from the UK's other major online grocer Ocado, a privately owned company which sources its supplies from the Waitrose supermarket chain. Ocado aims to raise GBP 200m in an ambitious float which values the business at more than GBP 1bn. Unlike all four existing services, which each have their own delivery fleet, Amazon plans to send out most of its grocery orders by regular mail, although chilled and fresh items will be delivered direct by third-party specialist suppliers.

Volkswagen Group unveiled a reshuffling of senior managers. Matthias Mueller was named as executive chairman of the group's newly acquired Porsche subsidiary. He takes over from Michael Macht, who stepped in to run the business last summer following the dismissal of Wendelin Wiedeking, the CEO who engineered Porsche's disastrous attempt to acquire Volkswagen. Macht was in turn rewarded with a promotion to the main Volkswagen Group board, where he assumes responsibility for global vehicle production. His predecessor in that role, Jochem Heizman, takes on a new position as board member for commercial vehicles.

Everything Everywhere, the newly created joint venture company which now operates the Orange and T-Mobile mobile services in the UK, announced details of its merged marketing department. A single team will, for the most part, manage both brands under the control of Guillaume van Gaver (VP, marketing) and Steven Day (VP, brands & communication). Stuart Jackson was named as brand communications director with Spencer McHugh as brand marketing director. However, each brand will also retain a small dedicated team of its own. Pippa Dunn was named as VP, Orange Propositions, with Lysa Hardy as VP, T-Mobile Propositions. Elsewhere in the UK, BT's retail & consumer marketing director Matthew Dearden resigned to become chief executive of outdoor media owner Clear Channel UK. His replacement at BT has not yet been named.

In other personnel moves, Walmart announced a further shuffling of its management team. John Fleming, chief merchandising officer since 2007, is leaving the group. His role is being split between John Westling, who becomes EVP, general merchandising & replenishment, and Jack Sinclair who was named as EVP, food & health & wellness merchandising. Meanwhile Nokia has raided BlackBerry manufacturer RIM to poach Charmaine Eggberry, previously VP for EMEA regional operations. She becomes Nokia's SVP, global marketing GTMO (or go-to-market operations). Travel portal Orbitz, a unit of Travelport, appointed Chris Orton, former director of internet marketing at eBay, as chief marketing officer.

Tate & Lyle agreed to sell its European sugar and syrup businesses to American Sugar Refining (ASR) for GBP 211m. The deal includes the sale of the iconic Tate & Lyle packet sugar business (including a long-term license to use the Tate & Lyle name) as well as Lyle's Golden Syrup, one of the world's oldest brands. Instead Tate & Lyle intends to focus its attention on its higher-margin speciality ingredients division. ASR has already acquired several other Tate & Lyle businesses in the past, including its operations in North America. The company is best known at home for the US sugar brand Domino and in Canada for Redpath.

Google established a sizeable toehold in another new sector by agreeing to acquire ITA Software, a developer of online travel reservation systems, for $700m. ITA's products include software which allows airlines to manage flexible pricing for online ticket sales, as well as passenger reservation systems and an online booking engine. At least one motivation for the purchase is to mount a more convincing attack on Microsoft's rival search engine Bing, which has carved out something of a niche in travel search. Announcing the purchase of ITA, Google CEO Eric Schmidt declined to rule out the possibility that the company might ultimately start selling tickets itself, although he said that such a strategy was "less likely".

Deloitte published the latest edition of its annual Football Money League report, ranking the world's richest clubs. For the first time, two Spanish teams held the #1 and #2 spot, a fact that could have some added significance if Spain's national team succeed in carrying off the World Cup for the first time this weekend. Real Madrid was the world's richest club for the 5th consecutive year, and now becomes the only club ever to exceed E400m in annual revenues. FC Barcelona overtook Manchester United to take second place, while Germany's Bayern Munich ranked 4th. England's Arsenal, Chelsea and Liverpool held the next three spots, while Italy's Juventus, Internazionale and AC Milan rounded out the top ten. Download the full report here. Meanwhile, the beleaguered England national team are to begin looking for a new lead sponsor following the decision by building society Nationwide not to renew its current contract when it expires this summer. Nationwide said that its decision was not influenced by England's dismal performance in the World Cup. According to press reports, the Football Association has been demanding GBP 30m for the next four-year contract, a steep increase on the GBP 20m Nationwide agreed to pay in 2006.


In the news this past week: Agencies

Alex Bogusky, the creative guru largely responsible for the rapid ascendancy of US agency Crispin Porter & Bogusky since 2000, announced his resignation from both that agency and parent group MDC Partners. He says he is keen to pursue opportunities outside the advertising industry (and will in fact be held to that promise by a multi-year non-compete clause). His departure is not entirely unexpected. Bogusky began to relinquish his day-to-day responsibilities at CPB a couple of years ago, passing direct control of the agency's creative department to co-ECDs Rob Reilly and Andrew Keller. However, according to an interview he gave this week to Fast Company magazine, the key factor for his departure was the fact that MDC's chairman Miles Nadal "started getting phone calls from some clients that didn't like things that I had said". Bogusky has become increasingly outspoken in recent years in his extra-curricular activities. In his recent book 9-Inch Diet, for example, he launched an attack on giant-size portions served in American restaurants, a view that didn't go down well with CPB clients Burger King and Domino's Pizza. Since then, in his blog and web show Fearless TV, Bogusky has regularly targeted global, and especially American, consumerism. "Miles was cool about it," Bogusky told Fast Company, "but to me I just thought this is going to happen over and over, and Iíve barely begun. It's like, everyone's got enough going on, so I don't want MDC to have to deal with damage control. So Miles and I basically went back to plan A - retirement." In a separate interview with the New York Times, Bogusky said he is keen to dabble in areas such as social media. "Mostly what I want to do is participate in this cultural revolution that's happening, mostly outside of advertising. The more interesting stuff is coming from the fringes, and that's where I want to be."

Some of Bogusky's duties as group-wide "chief creative insurgent" at MDC may be inherited by Marc Lucas, who is moving from his role as chief creative officer at another MDC subsidiary Kirshenbaum Bond Senecal & Partners after just six months. The former Razorfish executive is to take on a role as senior digital creative director across the whole MDC portfolio, and will be replaced at KBSP by co-creative director Izzy Debellis and Edward Brojerdi. According to AdAge, Lucas "butted heads culturally" with some of the KPSP team. Separately, Digitas named Lincoln Bjorkman as chief creative officer for North America, overseeing the output from all six of the agency's offices in the region. He also remains CCO for Digitas New York and creative leader on the American Express account.

Yes, it's Fallon for Cadillac. After a few days of intense negotiation over the immediate conflict between incoming Cadillac and Fallon's existing client Chrysler, the latter brand has agreed to walk away, allowing Fallon to accept the higher-billing Cadillac business. Chrysler spent around $150m on US advertising last year, according to Kantar figures, whereas Cadillac's expenditure was more than $350m. This arrangement follows the abrupt decision by new GM marketing chief Joel Ewanick to pull the Caddy account from sitting agency BBH and move it to Fallon, an agency with whom he had worked before. Terms of the split between Fallon and Chrysler were, inevitably, not made public. However, AdAge suggests that the Fiat-controlled car company is in no great hurry to find a new shop, with several campaigns already in the bag and waiting to air. According to Adweek, Chrysler Group has asked its other current roster shops, which include Wieden & Kennedy and Richards, to pitch and has also invited submissions from Interpublic's Gotham agency and an alternative Publicis Groupe team comprising Publicis & Hal Riney and Paris-based Marcel.

Digital Marketing Group, ranked by Campaign as the country's biggest interactive agency group, reported weak performance for its most recent financial year, although the group said the results were in line with expectations considering the slowing economy. Revenues slid 27% to GBP 48.5m for the year to March 2010, mainly as a result of a steep fall in sales of data analytics services to financial services clients. The group reported a pretax loss of GBP 1.4m. That deficit was largely the result of a non-cash impairment charge of GBP 3.8m relating to past acquisitions, but the group also enjoyed a one-off benefit from a GBP 1.7m settlement for breach of contractual obligation by a former client. Excluding both those exceptional items, bottom line would have fallen from an effective GBP 4.8m profit last year to a lost of almost GBP 1.2m for the latest period.

In a bold stand for creative excellence, German agency Lukas Lindemann Rosinski resigned its position on the roster of confectioner Ferrero, one of Germany's biggest advertisers, citing frustration over the lack of creative opportunities on the account. LLR had handled the advertising for the Duplo, Pingui, Raffaello and Ferrero Rocher brands. Explaining their decision, LLR's creative partner Bent Rosinski said, "In the current economic crisis, many agencies have damaged their position because they regarded money as more important than reputation. This is understandable in the short term, but stupid. We want to convince our clients with our creativity. If we can't do that then we must also have the courage to end the collaboration."

In other other account assignments, Pfizer called a review of creative for OTC analgesic Advil, currently managed by Grey New York. Pinnacle Foods transferred creative for its portfolio, which includes Aunt Jemima's and Duncan Hines baking products, Vlasic pickles and Birds Eye and Hungry Man frozen meals, to BBDO New York and Kirshenbaum Bond Senecal, out of Merkley & Partners and Publicis & Hal Riney. In the UK, Vodafone called a review of direct marketing out of Partners Andrews Aldridge. H&M kicked off what is expected to become a global media review by calling a pitch for its UK account, held by Universal McCann. For all other appointments, subscribers can access the full Adbrands Account Assignments database here


In the news this past week: Media

Walt Disney's ABC network has lost a six-year court battle with UK-based programme-maker Celador over profit-sharing from the lucrative Who Wants To Be A Millionaire TV show. A California court ordered ABC to pay Celador substantial damages of $270m. Celador was the originator of the Millionaire format, and sold US rights to ABC in 1998. The show proved to be a huge success in America and was largely responsible for turning around the fortunes of the then-struggling network. Under the terms of their deal Celador understood that it was to receive 50% of the profits from the show, but the payments it received appeared to fall far short of that sum. After unsuccessful attempts to reach an amicable settlement with Disney, Celador initiated a lawsuit in 2004. Disney has vowed to appeal against the new verdict.

Guardian Media Group, owner of the UK's Guardian and Observer newspapers as well as a clutch of business information, radio and broadcast assets, confirmed Andrew Miller as its new chief executive. He was previously the group's CFO, and replaces Carolyn McCall, who is leaving to run Easyjet.

David Abraham, newly appointed chief executive of UK broadcaster Channel 4, has ruled out any deal with struggling competitor Five, for which current owner RTL is seeking a buyer. In an interview with UK trade magazine Media Week, he said "A merger with Five, or anyone else, is certainly not on my immediate agenda for the future of Channel 4." That stance is likely to force Five into some sort of partnership with BBC Worldwide.

The world's most valuable web domain is up for sale, as a result of the bankruptcy of its owner. Los Angeles-based Escom LLC acquired the sex.com domain for a record $14m in 2006, but has now defaulted on the loan it took out to fund that purchase. As a result, German domain registrar Sedo has been appointed to find a buyer. In its heyday, before the growth of Google and other search engines, sex.com was making as much as $15,000 a day from advertising to visitors looking for online porn, but traffic has declined sharply in the past few years, and is likely to take a further dive following the introduction of the new .xxx domain suffix next year. The domain was originally registered in 1994 by Gary Kremen, later the founder of dating site Match.com. A year later, though, fraudster Stephen Cohen seized control of the site using forged documents, prompting a five-year legal battle. Kremen was eventually determined to be the owner of the site and was awarded $65m in damages for lost earnings. Cohen is rumoured to have earned as much as $100m in the five years that he controlled the site.

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Simon Tesler
Publisher, Adbrands