Toys R Us names Burnetts to $75m account

- Toys 'R' Us has appointed Leo Burnett and its sister agency Starcom Media to handle its estimated $75 million (£46 million) advertising and media business following a heavily contested pitch.

- Toys 'R' Us has appointed Leo Burnett and its sister agency Starcom Media to handle its estimated $75 million (£46 million) advertising and media business following a heavily contested pitch.

Leo Burnett fought it out against seven agencies including incumbent agency Kaplan/Thaler. The five other agencies competing for the account were Ammirati Puris Lintas, Bozell Worldwide, Deutsch, Saatchi & Saatchi and TBWA Chiat/Day, all out of New York, and Doner in Southfield, Michigan.

To win the media Starcom presented against incumbent Quantum Media International, Media Edge and Western Initiative, all out of New York.

Leo Burnett has been asked to rejuvenate the retail giant's fortunes. In recent years it has lost ground and seen the Arkansas-based discount giant Wal-Mart become market leader.

It has also failed to anticipate the growth of toy sales online, although it does now sell toys through its website located at www.toysrus.com.

Warren Kornblum, chief marketing officer at Toys R Us, said: "We've got a firm foundation and a good structure, but we need to brighten it up and do some renovation to make it the cornerstone of the community. It was a hard-fought competition and all the agencies involved did an outstanding job, putting a lot of effort and energy into the process."

Toys R Us currently has around 1,500 stores. This includes 703 toy stores in the US and 457 international toy stores.



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