Beck's, the German lager brand, has called a review of its global advertising account, which is currently handled by Leo Burnett.
Beck's parent company, InBev, confirmed the review and said that it was sparked by a collapse in the relationship between the brand and Leo Burnett Chicago, which is responsible for running the global account.
The review will be run from InBev's headquarters in Belgium. The company is seeking an agency to produce a global campaign that can be adapted for local markets. InBev's other roster agencies, which include Lowe and Bartle Bogle Hegarty, are expected to be invited to pitch, and several off-roster agencies have also been approached. Leo Burnett has been asked to take part in the review.
An InBev spokesman said: "We can confirm that a global review is taking place and Leo Burnett is part of the pitch process. This decision should in no way reflect on the quality of work produced by Leo Burnett. The review is part of a very normal process. Our over-riding objective is to ensure we have the best agency possible to create and execute our campaigns."
The review comes only nine months after Leo Burnett London was appointed to the Beck's account. Last August, the agency resigned its £8 million Scottish & Newcastle account in order to take up the £1.2 million Beck's business.
The agency recently created its first Beck's TV work, backed by a £3 million media spend. The advertising was the brand's first on UK TV since 1999.
In May last year, InBev bought the right to license and distribute Beck's in the UK from Scottish & Newcastle for £77 million. The sum will be paid in annual instalments until 2012.
Beck's is one of InBev's four global brands. The others are Stella Artois, Brahma and Leffe.
In April 2006, InBev appointed its new chief executive, Carlos Brito.
His strategy is to create unified global brands, driving sales in international markets.
Beck's media planning and buying account, held by Starcom, is not thought to be affected by the review.