Burger King raids UDV to fill top job

Smirnoff brand director Almond succeeds Thomson as marketing director for UK & Ireland.

Burger King UK & Ireland has appointed Smirnoff brand director Philip Almond as its new marketing director.

Almond replaces Lorraine Thomson, who quit the Diageo-owned burger chain to join Internet portal Excite Europe as marketing director (MW June 22).

He has spent the past five years in senior marketing roles at UDV UK, also part of Diageo. He was most recently brands director for Smirnoff and Ready to Drink Group.

Almond oversaw the “No Imperfections” ad campaign for Smirnoff Red. He was also responsible for the launch of Smirnoff Ice, achieving first year sales targets in three months.

Before joining UDV, Almond worked for knitwear company Coates Viyella and for Ogilvy & Mather.

Almond, who starts his new role on November 1, will oversee marketing strategy for 630 Burger King restaurants and report to the chain’s president for Europe, the Middle East and Africa, André Lacroix.

Burger King’s creative account is handled by Lowe Lintas. Media planning on the £11m business was recently moved from Lowe into Carat, which also handles media buying.

It is unclear whether Almond has been replaced at UDV UK. The company recently merged with Guinness.

Don Goulding has been named Great Britain managing director of UDV Guinness.

Burger King courted controversy from food watchdogs when it introduced a loyalty card for children (MW August 10).

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