Nintendo and its UK ad agency Leo Burnett have parted company,
leaving the computer games firm relying on imported ads for its crucial
pre-Christmas marketing blitz against rival Sony.
Leo Burnett said both parties cited differences over future creative
direction as the reason for the end of the arrangement, but stressed the
parting was amicable.
THE Games, distributor for Nintendo in the UK, is not expected to sign
another creative agency in the UK but will instead rely on ads from its
other territories. It will, however, seek a media independent to handle
its media buying.
The UK account was worth about pounds 3m over the past year. Leo Burnett
took over the business in May 1996, in preparation for the UK launch of
its N64 games console. Previously it was with J Walter Thompson, which
also split over strategic differences.
The move will not affect Leo Burnett’s hold on the account in the US,
where Nintendo is spending pounds 60m on marketing this year.
Leo Burnett’s first creative for THE Games was for the Pocket
The press ads featuring a woman tied to a bed and attracted complaints
to the Advertising Standards Authority.