Grey Worldwide set to launch Hennessy 'brandy for women'

Grey Worldwide has been picked to handle the pan-European launch of a new Hennessy brandy designed to appeal to women.

Fine de Cognac Hennessy will be sold in fragrance-style bottles and is claimed to be lighter with a fruitier taste than traditional brandies.

The account will be run out of Callegari Berville Grey in Paris, which was awarded the creative assignment after pitching against Young & Rubicam, a roster network of Hennessy's LVMH Group parent, and the Hamburg-based Springer & Jacoby.

Germany and France are regarded as key markets for the product, which will not be launched in the UK, where Seagram's Martell is brand leader, for another two years.

A budget of £650,000 will back this month's initial launch activity, a print campaign with the strapline: "The time stops, the journey starts."

The ads juxtapose brandy's warm associations with a series of surreal images. Pierre Berville, the president of Callegari Berville, said: "Our strategy is to make the product seem sensual and to show how it enriches your life by enriching your senses."

Fine de Cognac will account for most of Hennessy's pan-European marketing budget for the next two years.

In Britain, the rising popularity of brandy among young black drinkers has helped reverse sales trends. Hennessy, in particular, has acquired a hipper image through frequent mentions by rap artists.