McCann picks up Intel rival’s £20m global brief

AMD (Advanced Micro Devices) has appointed McCann-Erickson as its global ad agency. The European business, believed to be worth about &£20m, will be handled by McCann London, while McCann-Erickson in San Francisco has global control of the account.

The announcement follows a pitch against Young & Rubicam San Francisco and Leo Burnett subsidiary LB Works of Chicago. The account was previously handled by Boston-based Hill Holliday, with Publicis London co-ordinating the European work.

AMD director of corporate branding Bob Kennedy says McCann has “demonstrated a comprehensive understanding of AMD’s technology strengths, and it has the global network to communicate those strengths around the world.”

McCann is expected to work on both AMD’s corporate and product advertising.

California-based AMD is Intel’s smaller rival in the computer chip market. It recently signalled a shift away from speed as the main selling point on microprocessors, by giving its latest chip a name – the Athlon – rather than a number, and claiming there are other factors by which to judge performance.

AMD has been trying to emerge from the shadow of Intel in recent months. The company’s founder and chief executive, Jerry Sanders, steps down in March and hands over to a new management team which has been charged with rebranding AMD as more than simply the alternative to Intel. A 64-bit chip, code-named Hammer, will launch later this year.

McCann created last October’s launch ad campaign for Microsoft Windows XP. A McCann London insider says: “I believe our experience with Microsoft was very attractive to AMD.”

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