Mediaedge:CIA wins four-way battle for £8m Weight Watchers European brief

Weight-loss brand Weight Watchers has consolidated its E12m (£8.2m) European planning and buying account into Mediaedge:CIA. The agency beat Zenith Optimedia, Universal McCann and UK incumbent Carat to the business.

The review, which was handled by the AAR, includes 11 countries but not the UK, which is managed separately. Carat will continue to handle Weight Watchers’ UK planning and buying.

The media review follows the appointment earlier this year of Publicis and FCB to handle the creative brief for Continental Europe. The overhaul of the brand’s suppliers follows the promotion of UK head of marketing Carol Andrews to a European role (MW March 4).

Former Publicis Focus managing director Miriam Jordan Keane joins Weight Watchers as chief brand officer this month (MW August 5). Based in the US, she will be responsible for developing the brand globally. Keane will report to chief executive Linda Hewitt.

Weight Watchers International has used Duchess of York Sarah Ferguson to promote the brand for several years, although not in the UK. It is understood the brand has come under increasing pressure from different diets, such as low-carbohydrate lifestyles Atkin’s and South Beach.

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