FIFA appoints HHCL to improve global image

FIFA, football’s world governing body, has hired HHCL & Partners to develop global brand advertising as it bids to improve its image in the eyes of football fans.

FIFA, football’s world governing body, has hired HHCL & Partners to

develop global brand advertising as it bids to improve its image in the

eyes of football fans.



The appointment was made by FIFA’s Zurich-based marketing partner, ISL

Worldwide, after a credentials presentation. There was no formal

pitch.



The assignment forms part of a programme by ISL to highlight FIFA’s

values and involvement in football beyond the World Cup. It aims to make

FIFA synonymous with football and as popular as the game itself.



The initiative is a tacit admission that FIFA has been tarnished by

negative publicity in the past, such as a Panorama programme broadcast

by the BBC last year which was critical of FIFA’s then president, Joao

Havelange.



Flavio Battaini, FIFA’s director of marketing, said research had shown

that ’fans wanted to know that their game was in safe hands, and that

there was a leadership that really cared for the sport and had the

necessary strength to keep it pure’.



ISL has outlined three main tasks for HHCL. First, the agency will

create a new image for FIFA, explaining its role and attempting to bring

it closer to football fans.



Second, there will be a specific children’s initiative, which will aim

to get youngsters around the world interested in football.



The agency will also work closely with sponsors, including Coca-Cola,

Mastercard and McDonald’s, to develop more varied outlets for football

sponsorship.



The agency will capitalise on the WPP connections of its parent company,

Chime Communications, to manage the global advertising. ISL is intending

to target South America, Europe and Japan in the first instance.



The activity is expected to get under way at the end of this year or the

start of 2000.



ISL has yet to take a decision on which agency will handle the media

buying for the campaign, although it is likely that HHCL will manage the

strategic planning. ISL is intending to use a range of media including

television, press and the internet.



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