By Amanda Wilkinson and Stephanie Bentley

MindShare has retained its hold on Kellogg’s media buying accounts in France, Belgium, the Netherlands, Spain, Portugal and Italy after a head on pitch with Carat.

The agency’s success comes shortly after it was ousted from Kellogg’s media buying accounts in Germany, Austria, Switzerland and Eastern Europe by Carat in December last year (MW December 10 1998).

A Kellogg spokeswoman says there will be no immediate change in the UK, Ireland and Scandinavia, currently handled by MindShare, but refused to comment on long-term plans.

The decision to hold a series of reviews indicates a reversal in Kellogg’s strategy of 18 months ago when it consolidated its whole European account into the WPP-owned media buying group known as Kellogg Europe Media.

Empowerment of local management is seen as the key to Kellogg’s new strategy. Each country’s manager is expected to exert more influence on how the media buying service will be handled in local markets.

The strategy was put into place following the appointment of the new head of Kellogg Europe Jean-Louis Gourbin, former head of Kellogg Asia-Pacific.

He replaced Don Fritz, who resigned suddenly last year (MW September 17 1998) in the wake of Kellogg’s declining market share on both sides of the Atlantic.

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