Nestlé axe falls on Leo Burnett

Nestlé has dropped Leo Burnett from its UK agency roster, moving Carnation Coffee-mate, Burnett’s last piece of Nestlé business, to a below-the-line agency.

Nestlé has dropped Leo Burnett from its UK agency roster, moving Carnation Coffee-mate, Burnett’s last piece of Nestlé business, to a below-the-line agency.

The London agency has worked on the account since the late Eighties when it clawed some Nestlé business back after the company fired Leo Burnett’s worldwide.

Historically the business has been worth between 2m and 3m but has not appeared on TV since last year when about 1m was spent on a national campaign.

According to Nestlé, there are no plans for any TV ads this year.

The PR Connection has been appointed to handle below-the-line activity on the 25-year-old brand, which now comes in a low-fat Coffee-mate Lite version.

The company is running a sampling campaign in shopping malls and on railway stations, accompanied by a survey.

But insiders are tipping Nestlé to relaunch the brand next year and appoint a new advertising agency.

One trade source says: “Milks and creams is a huge business for Nestlé around the world and it is one of their most profitable areas in the UK. There is definitely a future for the Carnation and Coffee-mate brands in the UK.”

A Nestlé spokeswoman says: “There is no suggestion of a bad relationship between Leo Burnett and Nestlé. There are no plans for any TV with Carnation Coffee-mate and the brand will be supported by below-the-line activity.”

Nestlé’s UK roster agencies are McCann-Erickson, Foote Cone & Belding, Ogilvy and Mather, Publicis and J Walter Thompson.

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