Saatchis muscles on to Cereal Partners roster

McCann-Erickson’s grip on the pounds 20 million advertising account of Cereal Partners has been weakened following the surprise appointment of Saatchi & Saatchi to a key piece of business.

McCann-Erickson’s grip on the pounds 20 million advertising account

of Cereal Partners has been weakened following the surprise appointment

of Saatchi & Saatchi to a key piece of business.



Saatchis won the coveted place on the cereal giant’s roster by carrying

off its Shredded Wheat Fruitful brand. The wheat and fruit breakfast

cereal was launched in the UK in 1995 but sales have been

disappointing.



Cereal Partners, which numbers Shredded Wheat, Shreddies and Cheerios

among its brands, is a joint venture between the massive General Mills

corporation of the US and the Swiss giant, Nestle. Saatchis already

handles work for General Mills in the US and work created by Saatchis

New York has run in the UK, but the UK agency has never been on the

roster.



Neither Ben Langdon, the chief executive of McCanns, nor Alan Bishop,

the chairman of Saatchis, would comment on the move, nor on rumours that

the relationship between McCanns and Cereal Partners had been strained

for some time. However, Cereal Partners released a statement confirming

the switch. Media, which is currently handled by Universal McCann, is

unaffected.



Cereal Partners was formed in 1989 when General Mills combined forces

with Nestle to tap into the latter’s considerable European experience to

boost its sales outside the US. McCanns has been its agency of record in

the UK since its inception and makes around 40 commercials a year for

its different brands.