Sara Lee has handed its Champion sportswear brand to the Pretty Polly management team in an attempt to break into the UK market.
The move follows the departure of Champion general manager Fred Nykamp to Canada.
Sara Lee has brought in Brian Duffy, managing director of the Pretty Polly division, and his right-hand man David Kelly to build Champion into a top-five UK sports brand. Kelly has been named as Champion UK marketing director. Duffy will add responsibility for the brand to his existing role.
Kelly worked with Duffy on the Wonderbra relaunch – famous for its use of supermodel Eva Herzigova and the strapline “Hello boys”. He will be supported by Champion UK marketing manager Hugo Youngman.
The move comes just three months after Champion announced its intention to enter the UK market by bringing in Nykamp from Champion Canada and hiring TBWA GGT Simons Palmer – the agency which worked on both Wonderbra and Pretty Polly – to lead a &£2.5m marketing campaign.
A Champion spokeswoman says: “Both Wonderbra and Pretty Polly had exciting PR and ad campaigns and we can expect the same thing for Champion.”