Saatchi & Saatchi has won the high-profile Multiple Sclerosis Society account, taking over from BMP DDB Needham, which resigned the business earlier this year.
Saatchi won the 600,000 charity account after pitching against Kilmartin Baker & Brann, following credentials presentations from 18 agencies. The account sits alongside the National Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Children as the agency’s other charity account.
BMP DDB Needham split from the society in May after the agency said the MSS had decided on a more tactical approach to advertising with publicity revolving around fundraising rather than building awareness. In March, the charity appointed below-the-line specialist Brann to handle direct marketing activity.
MSS chief executive Peter Cardy says changes in the provision of social services and the emergence of potential treatments for MS, like Schering Health Care’s Beta Interferon, led to a review of the way the charity should develop over the years.
Saatchi’s work on the new account is unlikely to appear for the next couple of months. The charity and agency have yet to decide whether the campaign will focus on fundraising or awareness-building.
BMP DDB Needham held the account for eight years, when it was worth about 1.2m a year. The last major campaign was run three years ago. Its work took awareness of the charity to second place.