Publicis wins $120m Allied Domecq brands

Allied Domecq is bolstering its relationship with Publicis by picking the network to handle the global creative assignments for Beefeater gin, Stolichnaya vodka and Kahlua liqueur.

The account, estimated to be worth between $110 million and $120 million, will be run out of the Publicis agency in London. It builds on the relationship between the drinks giant and the Publicis group, whose Optimedia subsidiary handles Allied Domecq's global media planning.

Publicis takes over the assignments from BBDO, whose short tenure drew to a close in July when Allied Domecq revealed it would be looking for a new network to work on the business.

Publicis, which previously worked on Allied Domecq's Ballantines whisky brand in the late 90s, was awarded the business without a pitch.

The switch comes as Allied Domecq centralises marketing at its UK headquarters.

The move reflects the company's increased emphasis on more targeted retail and sampling rather than branding.

Kim Manley, the chief marketing officer who joined last year from Diageo, has been leading the shift to on-trade promotional activity rather than TV and print advertising.

None of the three brands has a strong ad presence in the UK. Beefeater's main markets are Europe and the US, Stolichnaya sells strongly in the US while Kahlua is popular in the Asia-Pacific region.

Last year, Allied Domecq appointed Cordiant to handle the lion's share of its global business.

including Ballantines and Tia Maria which are run out of its 141 operation in London. Earlier this year Cordiant's business was supplemented by the $65 million Malibu rum global creative assignment.

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