Court Burkitt & Company has lost two of its key United Distillers &
Vintners accounts - Baileys and Malibu - to Lowe Howard-Spink. The moves
came just days after CBC had celebrated winning UDV’s Bell’s whisky
brand from WCRS (Campaign, last week).
Both changes are part of a global rethink by UDV, which is pooling the
bulk of its business into three international networks - Leo Burnett,
the Lowe Group and J. Walter Thompson.
The Lowe Group now handles Baileys and Malibu in almost all UDV’s major
markets. CBC had worked on Baileys since 1985 and on Malibu since the
brand’s launch in 1981.
Tony Scouller, the UK marketing director of UDV, confirmed: ’These moves
are part of UDV’s policy of consolidating agency alignments.’ Lowes
reacted quickly to the wins by hiring Rae Burdon, the deputy managing
director of McCann-Erickson London, as its first worldwide account
director on UDV. Burdon will have responsibility for the creation and
implementation of brand-building campaigns for all Lowes’ UDV brands,
which also include Smirnoff, Sheridans and Godet, and the deployment of
network resources on a worldwide basis.
Frank Lowe, chairman of the Lowe Group, said: ’The business we handle
for UDV has grown very rapidly in the five years since we were first
awarded Smirnoff internationally. This appointment will undoubtedly
provide both UDV and our network with valuable additional resources and
Burdon said: ’I like international work, I like Lowes and I like drinks
- that combination is ideal for me.
’The Smirnoff campaign is one of the best - if not the best - pieces of
drinks advertising in the world. Obviously that is a highly attractive
UDV has yet to decide the fate of its Classic Malts account, with WCRS,
while TMD Carat and Western International are competing for its pounds
30 million media planning and buying account.