BBC Worldwide hires Leo Burnett for global task

BBC Worldwide has appointed Leo Burnett to handle its pounds 30 million worldwide advertising account as it seeks to improve its international commercial operations.

BBC Worldwide has appointed Leo Burnett to handle its pounds 30

million worldwide advertising account as it seeks to improve its

international commercial operations.



Leo Burnett beat Leagas Delaney in a head-to-head pitch to become BBC

Worldwide’s first advertising agency. The shop will now be responsible

for promoting the company’s global brands on an international basis.



This will include Teletubbies, Walking with Dinosaurs and Top of the

Pops as well as several other un-named projects. Saatchi & Saatchi is

also understood to have been approached about the brief.



Kevin Harrington, BBC Worldwide’s global marketing director, confirmed

the appointment and said the budget would run into ’many millions’.



The review was carried out by BBC Worldwide’s Global Marketing Brand

Development division (GMBD), which was set up in 1997 to co-ordinate the

activities of its divisions across advertising and sponsorship.



The appointment will involve advertising a variety of brands across a

range of media in overseas markets. This could extend to include the

BBC’s portfolio of interests in international television, international

publishing, the children’s sector, the sports, motoring and

entertainment group and lifestyle.



Leo Burnett will be expected to help BBC Worldwide reach its target of

quadrupling its revenues of pounds 200 million by 2006.



The corporation faces increased competition from more marketing-driven

companies such as Channel 4, which has stretched its brand into its

subscription film channel, FilmFour. The BBC is now producing

merchandising around properties such as the popular interior design

series Changing Rooms.



BBC Worldwide has several key developments in the pipeline. It is

negotiating with US broadcasters to make an American version of Top of

the Pops.



It is also awaiting Canadian regulatory approval for a new general

entertainment pay-TV channel, BBC Canada.