Coke hires Naked and Mother to halt UK sales decline

LONDON - Coca-Cola is turning to Mother and Naked Communications to combat a £100m decline in UK sales.

It has handed Mother its "Z" range of diet and light drinks, while Naked will manage the co-ordination of the Coca-Cola icon brand into non-traditional media on a global scale.

Meanwhile, Naked's appointment to handle international "brand amplification" for the Coke Icon Brand will see it co-ordinate the Coke brand message's use in alternative media and events. A health backlash against sugary drinks saw UK sales of Fanta fall 11% last year to £162m, while the Coke brand lost £4m, a sales decline of 3%. The new range of carbonated soft drinks will see the diet and light versions of Fanta, Dr Pepper, Sprite and Lilt re-branded under the Z label, standing for zero added sugar.

Mother won the account following a pitch against a number of undisclosed agencies. It will launch the new range with a television spot for Fanta Z in May. The campaign will be followed by work for individual brands within the Z range, but no above-the-line advertising is currently planned for Lilt Z, Sprite Z or Dr Pepper Z.

The appointment does not include the Diet Coke business, which remains with Vallance Carruthers Coleman Priest. Soul retains Fanta, while Sprite remains at Lowe. Neither of the brands were included in the review.

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