McCann scoops 40m Glaxo OTC

Pharmaceutical giant Glaxo Wellcome has awarded McCann-Erickson the 40m full service advertising account for over-the-counter brands Zovirax coldsore cream, indigestion remedy Zantac 75 and Beconase hayfever treatment.

The account covers Western Europe, including the UK, and also takes in Australia and New Zealand. It includes media planning and buying. It will be run from the London office by Ian Davidson, senior vice-president for McCann-Erickson Worldwide.

McCann pitched against Bates Dorland, Leo Burnett and Sholtz & Friends. Bates previously held the accounts for Zovirax and Beconase, while J Walter Thompson held the Zantac 75 account. The first advertising, to include TV, press, poster and radio work, will break in the second half of the year in the UK and be rolled out to other markets.

The agency appointment follows the decision to dissolve the OTC joint marketing partnership with Warner-Lambert Company from January 1 this year. The partnership arose from agreements made separately by Glaxo Holdings and Wellcome in 1993 before the two merged in 1996 to form Glaxo Wellcome.

Glaxo regains marketing rights for Zovirax and Beconase worldwide and for Zantac 75 outside the US and Canada, where Warner-Lambert has acquired marketing rights.

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