VCCP saw off challenges from WCRS and two unnamed South African agencies to clinch the business.
Appletiser's owner, South African Breweries, and Coca-Cola Enterprises, which markets and distributes the brand in the UK, are channelling up to £5 million into what the companies hope will be a high-profile relaunch.
VCCP is already working on a brief to turn Appletiser into a power brand in the adult soft drinks sector, where it faces competition from rivals such as Aqua Libra, Schloer, Orangina and Snapple.
A new television and press campaign will roll out in the UK in June.
Media planning and buying will be handled by Walker Media, which already handles Coca-Cola Enterprises' business. TV work will also run in Europe, South Africa and Australia. Media arrangements in those markets have yet to be decided.
Norman Brodie, the marketing director of Coca-Cola Enterprises, said: "The brand has been around for ages but we need to rejuvenate it and make it relevant and contemporary again. The adult soft drinks sector is still shaping itself - no one brand owns the sector and there is a big opportunity for Appletiser to become a power brand."
Commenting on the decision to appoint VCCP, Brodie commented: "It is a bit like Appletiser: the fact that it is a start-up is nice. It is also very strong, both visually and strategically."
Appletiser was first launched in the UK in 1982 but more recently the brand has only received limited promotional support.