NEWS: HHCL’s tenure in doubt as Mazda favours JWT

Howell Henry Chaldecott Lury’s hold on Mazda’s pounds 6 million advertising account is in doubt after Mazda’s European head office named J. Walter Thompson as its lead agency across the Continent.

Howell Henry Chaldecott Lury’s hold on Mazda’s pounds 6 million

advertising account is in doubt after Mazda’s European head office named

J. Walter Thompson as its lead agency across the Continent.



JWT - a roster agency for Mazda’s parent, Ford - has convinced Mazda

Motor Europe of the need to harmonise its marketing image for Europe

(Campaign, 20 September). Advertising is handled by different agencies

in each country, because distributors choose their own shops.



However, observers suggest Mazda Europe may be following the trend among

car manufacturers of handling the launch and brand advertising of each

marque across Europe themselves. Next year, Mazda may move into ‘people

carriers’ and JWT may be hired for this project.



JWT would only confirm its appointment to lead ‘marketing communication

activities’ in Europe, a project that will be run from Germany.



In the UK, the relationship between Mazda UK and its agency, HHCL, has

shown signs of wear this year. HHCL was appointed by the distributor’s

previous marketing director, Jan Smith. Her successor, Chris Owens, has

been talking to other agencies.



JWT, which handles Ford in the US but has no car account in Europe, is

reported to have set its sights on winning more Mazda work on the

Continent. The agency has already picked up Germany’s pounds 20 million

account. Dominic Proctor, chief executive of JWT in London, declined to

comment.



Chris Satterthwaite, a partner at HHCL, said: ‘We’re very proud of what

we have achieved. Any changes will have to be something they think about

very seriously - and they are.’



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