Pillsbury UK is reviewing Haagen-Dazs’s pounds 10-12 million
pan-European full-service advertising account following a dispute with
Bartle Bogle Hegarty over the future direction of the luxury ice-cream
The disagreement erupted following Pillsbury’s decision to put out its
latest brief to rival agencies.
BBH has yet to decide whether it will repitch for the business. John
Bartle, the agency’s joint chief executive, said: ’BBH is currently
considering its position.’
Media planning and buying, which is handled by Motive, BBH’s media arm,
is part of the review.
Martin Jamieson, Pillsbury UK’s managing director, said: ’We would be
delighted if Bartle and his colleagues come off the fence and decide to
participate in this open review. Their position is not good at the
moment, but it is not one that is not recoverable. BBH would be a very
strong contender. We are very much attached to them.’
Jamieson said he would be meeting Bartle this week in a bid to resolve
the impasse. A shortlist is expected to be announced next week.
The advertising rethink follows a major shake-up at Pillsbury, a Grand
Metropolitan company, with the introduction of a new European brand
management structure across its four brands: Haagen-Dazs, Old El Paso,
Green Giant and Pillsbury. As part of the changes, Jamieson, a top
GrandMet marketer, was appointed as the managing director of Pillsbury
Haagen-Dazs is now expected to be promoted with a single campaign across
Europe. Jamieson explained: ’We are looking for a consolidated and
improved positioning for the brand across Europe. Haagen-Dazs crosses
borders better than any food brand I know.’
If BBH declines to repitch for the business, it would terminate a
successful partnership. BBH raised Haagen-Dazs’s profile six years ago
with its ground-breaking, raunchy advertising which positioned ice-cream
as a sensual, adult food.