Lowe loses £17m Saab to Leagas

Lowe’s grip on the global advertising for Saab has been weakened after the luxury car maker awarded Leagas Delaney the £17m European account for its new 9.3 diesel model.

The appointment was overseen by Saab global sales, marketing and brand director Knut Simonsson and global advertising manager Kristian Jörgensen in Sweden.

Lowe Brindfors, based in Stockholm, has traditionally held all the Swedish car maker’s European advertising, but General Motors-owned Saab has for the first time thrown the business open to pitch. Leagas Delaney, which holds the account for Saab’s Italian business, pitched against Enjoy Paris, the marque’s French agency, and Lowe Brindfors.

Leagas Delaney is producing television work in London that will be shown across Europe, including the UK. Lowe Brindfors will produce accompanying print work.

Vauxhall, also owned by General Motors, broke Lowe’s stranglehold on its UK advertising in 2002 by adding Delaney Lund Knox Warren & Partners to its roster. The agency has since gone on to win the lion’s share of the business (MW August 19).

However, General Motors is consolidating its entire £400m European media account. Initiative was awarded the £85m account for all General Motors brands in the UK last year (MW September 11, 2003). Opel and Daewoo, shortly to be rebranded as Chevrolet (MW March 18) are also owned by General Motors.

Diesel engine versions account for nearly half the luxury cars sold in Europe.

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