Lowe and MindShare pick up Nestle launch assignment

Nestle Rowntree has picked Lowe to spearhead the £4 million launch of what it claims will be a revolutionary range of new products.

The company is saying little about the range, developed over the past two years under the name Project Zephyr - only that they are indulgent, non-chocolate based snacks.

Mike O'Reilly, the Nestle Rowntree head of consumer communications, claimed: "There's nothing like it out there. It's really going to shake up the market."

The new assignment augments Lowe's other Nestle Rowntree brands, which include Quality Street, Milkybar, Double Cream and Aero.

MindShare will handle media planning and buying for the launch, which is scheduled to take place during the first half of next year.

Last year, Lowe defeated J. Walter Thompson in the contest to win the assignment to turn Baci, the Nestle premium chocolate brand, into a serious rival to Ferrero Rocher in the UK.

"We have appointed Lowe because it has already demonstrated its hunger and flexibility in working with us," O'Reilly added.

Industry sources say the launch is not a line extension of existing brands and is not connected with Nestle Rowntree's recent launch of low-carbohydrate versions of two of its best-selling products, Kit Kat and Rolo.

Matthew Bull, the Lowe chief executive, claimed the impact of the new range on the snacks market would be huge. "Nestle has developed this product by adopting a less traditional approach to developing solutions for consumer needs," he said.

"It wants our help to build every aspect of this brand to ensure that it is a success from day one."