Wisdom, Britain’s oldest toothbrush manufacturer, is talking to
agencies about a major relaunch next year to claw back lost market
The move follows a re-evaluation of its strategy after its acquisition
earlier this year by Jordan AS, the Norwegian oral care to household
It puts a question mark over the account’s future at FCA!, which
acquired the business when it merged with Kelly Weedon Shute last
Nobody at Wisdom was available for comment but Jordan has already
declared its intention to extend Wisdom’s product range into other
dental sectors such as floss.
James Kelly, the FCA! deputy chairman, said: ’Wisdom has not told us it
is putting the business up for pitch but it’s true that the company has
been reorganising itself since the Jordan takeover.’
The account, said to be worth pounds 1 million when KWS won it in March
1997, has been dormant since last year’s campaign to launch the Wisdom
Orbital, the innovative round-headed manual toothbrush.
However, Wisdom’s sales have been hit by the introduction of rival
products from toothpaste manufacturers, particularly SmithKline Beecham,
which has increased its share of the pounds 127 million UK toothbrush
market with the launch of the Flex range.
The highly fragmented market also has a strong own-label presence,
particularly at the value end.
Although the market has grown steadily during the past five years,
manufacturers believe it has considerably more potential because
consumers do not change their toothbrushes regularly.