Cordiant wins Allied Domecq's integrated Malibu assignment

LONDON - Allied Domecq has lifted the gloom at the Cordiant Group by handing it the $65 million global account for Malibu, its coconut rum brand.

It has also appointed Optimedia to the £3 million UK Malibu media planning and buying account. Carat previously had the business and Optimedia already works on Allied Domecq's Tia Maria business.

Cordiant's appointment marks the end of J. Walter Thompson's three-year ten-ure of the business and of the "life less serious advertising, originally created by Lowe.

Cordiant's integrated specialist, 141 Worldwide, will be the lead team on the account through its London base, with Bates Worldwide handling above-the-line advertising and the Cordiant-owned Fitch looking after branding and design.

Cordiant became Allied Domecq's principal marketing services partner on all its leading spirits brands last year. Cordiant has been hit by profits warnings and job losses in recent months and is often mooted as a takeover target.

Cathryn Sleight, Allied Domeecq's UK marketing director, said it had appointed Optimedia to provide "innovation in our communications strategy, while continuing the successful core planks of the programme including TV and cinema".

Confirmation of Malibu's move into Cordiant came just days after the completion of the brand's £560 million sale to Allied Domecq by Diageo.

Cordiant's integrated specialist, 141 Worldwide, will be the lead team on the account through its London base with Bates Worldwide handling above-the-line advertising and the Cordiant-owned Fitch looking after branding and design.

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