- Encyclopaedia Britannica is looking for an agency to handle its biggest-ever advertising drive as it prepares to relaunch the brand in the UK.
The privately-owned company has shortlisted four unnamed agencies for the task. A decision on the agency is expected in six weeks, according to Marcus Missen, head of advertising at Britannica.
There is no incumbent on the business. Direct Marketing Services has been handling the company's CD-rom upgrade activity, and was recently awarded the brief to handle the brand's retail support.
The relaunch is going on in all major markets around the world. In the US, the company hired the New York agency Deutsch last month. Deutsch is in the process of setting up a London office at the moment, though Missen would not confirm if it is on the shortlist for the UK business.
The relaunch will support Britannica's transformation from a paper-based publisher to a digital medium. It will push the company's website, which can be used to access the encyclopaedia's information, or to subscribe to CD-Rom versions of the text. The company will, however, continue to manufacture the printed versions of its books.
Missen said: "It's fair to say that the internet will be playing an increasingly important role for us. But we will continue to print the books, because there is still a market for books to satisfy."
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