WCRS has been dropped from the roster of the Swiss health goods
manufacturer, Roche Consumer Health, after losing its pounds 3 million
Sanatogen account to DMB&B.
The switch, which leaves Roche with just two roster shops in the UK -
DMB&B and Bates Dorland - comes five months after WCRS appeared to have
staved off a threat to its position on the business.
Roche called a review of the Sanatogen advertising account last summer
(Campaign, 21 August 1998) but after a two-month pitch process involving
all three roster agencies, the account did not move. Now, the client has
decided to shift responsibility for the range of vitamin products as
part of a strategic realignment.
’This is a straightforward UK appointment,’ Nigel Pike, the
international account director on Sanatogen at DMB&B, said. ’We have
been working very closely with Roche on the Supradyn multi-vitamins
brand since December 1997.
’Now, the decision has been taken to realign the (Sanatogen) account
with the roster agency that holds that side of the business.’
The last Sanatogen advertising created by WCRS was a press campaign
which attempted to open up a new market for the brand among men. The
ads, which appeared in men’s style magazines, played on the average
man’s penchant for unhealthy takeaway food.
Sanatogen is Roche’s biggest UK brand. Others include Redoxon and Rennie
which are handled by Bates Dorland, and Supradyn and Eleve which are
handled by DMB&B.
Sophia Smith, the director of marketing at Roche, refused to comment on
the appointment. Charles Vallance, the WCRS managing director, said: ’We
are disappointed, but you have to be philosophical.’
Sanatogen is facing increased competition from new vitamin brands and
own-label retailers including Boots, Holland & Barrett and the US