AMV snatches £10m St Ivel Shape business from HHCL

HHCL & Partners has lost its £10 million St Ivel Shape

account to St Ivel's roster agency Abbott Mead Vickers BBDO, ten months

after winning it.



The agency move comes as St Ivel seeks to relaunch the yoghurts and

desserts brand for the second time in two years. AMV picked up the

account without a pitch, having lost out to HHCL in January's shake-up.

D'Arcy, the incumbent agency at the time, was not involved in the

review.



With sales of Shape falling 17 per cent last year, it is thought St Ivel

is keen to press ahead with a revamp and the brand will be relaunched in

the new year with new packaging, new product variants and a fresh

marketing push. When it appointed HHCL, the company upped its budget

four-fold in an attempt to boost sales. The brand was relaunched

previously to that in February 2000 with a £5 million campaign

through D'Arcy, which repositioned it as a full-fat product.



The move to AMV is a considerable boost to its existing hold on the St

Ivel accounts. It won the £9 million yellow fats account in

November last year, and also won the £3 million task to launch St

Ivel's olive-based spread, Carapelli.



HHCL's loss is another blow to the agency, which has also lost key

accounts including Egg and AA in recent weeks. Its TV work for Shape,

"Eat it like a bloke", showed women eating the products with

uncharacteristic masculine gusto, but is understood to have been

unpopular with the client.



HHCL claims activity on the brand was frozen shortly after the first

work due to a management reshuffle at St Ivel and a strategy rethink.