Littlewoods is scrapping its entire creative and media agency roster and appointing D’Arcy Masius Benton & Bowles and BBJ Media Services to handle its 10m account.
DMB&B pitched against two other agencies: incumbent Lowe Howard-Spink, which previously held the 6.6m full-service pools account; and Bates Dorland, which held the creative work on the 1.5m lotteries business (MW November 17). Media was held by LH-S and Equinox.
DMB&B picked up the creative work on the centralised account.
BBJ Media Services will handle media, and the 14m FA Cup sponsorship. Both DMB&B and BBJ will take over the account from April 1, 1996.
Littlewoods’ other creative agency Stowe Bowden Wilson, which held the 1.3m Spot-the-Ball account, was not asked to pitch.
The company says its advertising spend of 10m includes agency fees and commissions, although it is understood DMB&B will be handling the account on a fee, not a commission, basis.
“DMB&B wants to take us back to our footballing roots. A lot of people have said recently that we have tried to look like a lottery company but the National Lottery is here now and it’s not run by Littlewoods. Our strength is football and we won’t forget that,” says a company spokesman.
Littlewoods sales are understood to have fallen by between 15 and 20 per cent since last year.
The company also says the five per cent cut in betting tax in last month’s Budget will save it an additional 20m a year. This money will be channelled into prize money and additional spend, which could be devoted to advertising.