Ogilvy & Mather has picked up the 50m worldwide account for Lotus Development Corporation, the software company owned by IBM.
The account is worth between 13m and 22.5m in Europe. Lotus’s move into O&M brings it together with its parent company, which has been with the agency since 1994.
After buying the company last year, IBM decided to keep the advertising accounts separate in an effort to give the Lotus managers some independence. That decision has now been reversed.
The account moves from Hill Holiday Connors Cosmopoulos in the US, McCann-Erickson and Universal McCann in Europe, and a clutch of other agencies in Africa and the Middle East.
The decision was taken last week, without a pitch. The move is effective from January 1, 1997.
Lotus UK advertising manager Alison Blair says: “The purpose of the move is to improve the consistency of our global effort. Our aim will be to focus the core of our business around the Internet, which will tie in with IBM’s development of the network computer.”
She adds: “We plan to use the IBM brand to give us greater leverage in the market. And at the start of next year, we plan to be more aggressive in the way we advertise ourselves.”