Pitch update

YouView: agencies are due to present to Lord Sugar in the style of The Apprentice
YouView: agencies are due to present to Lord Sugar in the style of The Apprentice

Life imitates art in the pitch for YouView, whose logo has been compared to the one for Star Wars, as agencies prepare for a meeting with its very own "Imperial Dark Lord", Alan Sugar. Long lists are being drawn up this week ahead of agencies being invited to give a 30-minute presentation to him, Apprentice-style. Lord Sugar, who enjoys the fame that The Apprentice gives him, is expected to bark out "You’re hired" to the winning agency. If they get through the process without sniggering at the absurdity of it all, then they are stronger people than us.

Halfords, which split with DLKW Lowe earlier this month, has chosen a list of agencies to compete for its ad account. Having decided to eschew brand advertising in favour of price promotions, it has selected Cheethambell JWT, M&C Saatchi (which handled the business before DLKW Lowe) and, er, Mother.

Pitches for the Royal Society for the Protection of Birds took place last week ahead of a planned rebrand. The review is being led by Beth Thorens, the former BBC and Digital UK marketer.

Also keeping agencies busy were pitches this week for the alcohol education organisation Drinkaware, which split with OgilvyOne in November last year. The review is being handled by ISBA.

Agencies have lined up for Mothercare’s ad pitch being conducted via Oystercatchers. The pitchlist comprises Havas Worldwide London, Joint and Bartle Bogle Hegarty (which has worked with Mothercare in the past). The retailer’s new global brand and marketing director, Jude Bridge, is overseeing the review.

The Flora creative pitch is still crawling along. Adam & Eve/DDB, the incumbent, continues to battle it out with Mother via the mysterious world of pre-testing and research. The Unilever-owned brand kicked off proceedings in October 2012. A result is hoped for within the next fortnight.

And, finally, an opportunity perhaps for agencies looking to show off their flair for fashion. Ralph Lauren is searching for a digital creative agency to handle its business-to-business marketing. The luxury fashion brand has been in contact with shops to invite them to compete to handle its marketing communications within its wholesale channel. The brief involves branded marketing to Ralph Lauren’s retail partners such as Asos, Harrods, Selfridges and El Corte Inglés.


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