McCanns lands pounds 40m Glaxo Wellcome work

Glaxo Wellcome has appointed McCann-Erickson to handle its over-the-counter brands outside the US, following a pitch against Leo Burnett and Bates Dorland.

Glaxo Wellcome has appointed McCann-Erickson to handle its

over-the-counter brands outside the US, following a pitch against Leo

Burnett and Bates Dorland.



The business is worth pounds 40 million and will be run from McCanns

London with media buying through Universal McCann. It includes Glaxo’s

flagship brands: the heartburn drug, Zantac; the coldsore treatment,

Zovirax; and Beconase, a hayfever remedy.



Advertising for Zovirax and Beconase was handled by Bates Dorland, while

Zantac was with J. Walter Thompson.



The review, which was announced in the autumn (Campaign, 25 September

1998), followed the end of a joint venture agreement between Glaxo and

its rival pharmaceutical company, Warner Lambert.



Under the agreement, Glaxo’s over-the-counter medicines were marketed

through Warner Lambert.



But the end of the agreement, which followed the merger of Glaxo and

Wellcome, threw up conflict because Bates Dorland and J. Walter Thompson

also handle competing Warner Lambert business.



McCanns is now working on a TV campaign, which will air in the UK in the

second half of this year before rolling out internationally. It also

plans press, poster and radio advertising across all the brands.



’We are thrilled to be working with a company of the calibre of Glaxo

Wellcome,’ Ben Langdon, the chief executive of McCanns London, said.



’We pitched very hard for this business and intend to do an excellent

job for them. It’s an important win for McCanns and consolidates our

position as a leader in global brand advertising.’



Warner Lambert retains the marketing rights for Zantac in the US and

Canada, with Glaxo regaining the brand’s rights elsewhere. Future

products with the potential to switch from prescription to

over-the-counter will be marketed by Glaxo.



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