Dairy Crest has consolidated its media account, estimated to be worth £10m, into John Ayling & Associates. The move follows Dairy Crest’s £86m acquisition of the St Ivel spreads brands in October.
OMD UK handled the media for St Ivel spreads such as St Ivel Gold, Utterly Butterly and Vitalite, while John Ayling has had responsibility for Dairy Crest’s brands, including Clover, Argento and Cathedral City cheese. After Dairy Crest bought the St Ivel brands from Uniq, marketing director Richard Tolley indicated that a period of agency consolidation would follow (MW November 28). John Ayling’s appointment takes effect from April 1.
The news comes as Dairy Crest, which is now the UK’s largest branded dairy company, has shortlisted Grey Worldwide and Banks Hoggins O’Shea/FCB for its creative account. Grey is the incumbent for the Dairy Crest brands while Abbott Mead Vickers.BBDO handles the St Ivel spreads. An announcement is expected at the end of this week.
Last year, Dairy Crest moved into the olive spreads market with the launch of Argento. The product, which competes against Unilever Bestfoods’ Olivio, was backed by a £2.5m television campaign created by Grey. In the same month Dairy Crest announced a £750,000 sponsorship of dating show Elimidate, through its Frijj brand.