Wrigley's is shifting the creative assignment for Orbit, its sugar-free gum, into Abbott Mead Vickers BBDO from TBWA/London as a precursor to a major push behind the brand.
The company spends around pounds 4 million to support Orbit in the UK but industry sources expect the figure to more than double when the brand returns to TV with new advertising early next year. Media buying on the account remains at CIA.
The switch reinforces BBDO's relationship with Wrigley's, whose business it handles in a number of countries, including its US home market. It follows a presentation to Wrigley's bosses last week at which AMV is understood to have presented proposals about Orbit's strategy.
As the first of the sugar-free gums introduced in 1977, Orbit has been promoted as an aid to healthy teeth in an attempt to expand a market dominated by Wrigley's.
The Wrigley family, which is the major shareholder of the 109-year-old company, has been likened to the Mars brothers for its hands-on approach to advertising.
Michael Baulk, AMV's chairman, said: 'Wrigley's is the kind of client on which agencies like us have built their business. I'm glad we're getting back to it.'