NEW DELHI, December 8
Pen marketer Luxor Writing Instruments Ltd (LWIL) has cleaved its advertising account into two, and awarded the two parts to Contract Advertising, Delhi, and Lowe Lintas, Delhi, respectively. Leaving McCann-Erickson, which had been servicing the Luxor business for quite some time now, out in the cold. While Contract has been entrusted the Luxor brand, Lowe Lintas will be responsible for the top-end Parker.
Confirming the development, Ashish Dabral, vice-president, Contract Advertising, Delhi, said, "We won the account some 10 days ago. We shall be handling the communication for Luxor Pilot, Luxor Papermate and Luxor Stanford, a new pen that is to be launched shortly." Dabral revealed that the size of the Luxor part of LWIL's business is worth approximately Rs 8 crore.
A high-ranking official at Lowe Lintas has confirmed the news that the agency has won the Parker business, but refused to entertain any conversation on the subject till the agency had signed on the dotted line.
According to agencyfaqs! sources, apart from McCann, Contract and Lowe Lintas, three other agencies were involved in the pitch. While Rediffussion-DY&R and FCB-Ulka have been named, the identity of the third agency is not known - although Leo Burnett's name was mentioned.
Dabral is of the opinion that Contract won the Luxor business on the basis of the long-term thinking that the agency displayed vis-à-vis the brand. "The client was looking for a creative leap in their communication. Our work reflected the vision we had for the brand and the client saw the aggression in our approach."
Aggression is an essential element in communication, given the nature of the product category. The writing instruments market is coming to a boil with the likes of Reynolds, Newt, Rotomac and Add Gel elbowing Luxor for market share. Dabral puts the market in perspective when he says, "The category spend here is greater than that in chocolates." He admits that share-of-voice is very important, as pens are becoming single-usage impulse buys. "It is vital to stay top-of-the-mind, both in the media and at the retail level." Contract has started work on the account, which should be visible by January 2001.
What is interesting about this movement is the fact that Gillette is an equal-equity partner in LWIL. And Gillette's shaving products and shaving systems (including Braun) account is with McCann, by virtue of global alignments. The moot question is, now that McCann's defenses have been breached, will Gillette's shaving products and shaving systems account be stormed by other agencies, global alignment notwithstanding?
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