Following a hotly contested pitch, which saw the likes of Grey, McCann-Erickson and Everest locking horns over the Rs 5-6-crore (for the year 2002) account, Bates, Delhi, ceded the advertising account of Carrier Aircon to Grey Worldwide, Delhi. Confirming the development, Sameer Kapoor, director, product management, Carrier Indian, told agencyfaqs!, "Some time back we decided to sit down with our the incumbent agency (Bates) to look at our relationship over the past few years and at the end of the exercise we mutually agreed to part ways. That was some five to six weeks back. There were no major issues between us apart from some small things here and there."
Post that decision, Carrier Aircon went ahead and invited the three agencies named in this article for a pitch, which started around the fourth week of November. The process was rounded off last week and Grey Worldwide's Delhi office was given charge of Carrier Aircon's advertising business with effect from January 2002. Kapoor also mentioned that in the year 2001, the company had spent an estimated Rs 8 crore on advertising.
Talking about the account gain, a visibly excited Ashutosh Khanna, senior vice-president, Grey Worldwide, pointed out that it was the result of "a straightforward strategy pitch" and that Grey's media wing Mediacom would be the AOR on the account. As things stand now, Grey will be the custodian of the entire Carrier range spanning residential ACs, light commercial and commercial ACs. The fate of the Toshiba range of ACs, which is also marketed by Carrier Aircon, has not been decided yet.
For the records, Carrier Aircon started its India innings around 13 years back with Contract as its advertising agency. In about four years' time the account was moved to Bates, which has been handling the business since 1993/94. It seems now Carrier Aircon is gearing up for some fast-paced changes to be unveiled next year.
Giving a gist of the year 2002 plan, Kapoor said, "We have entered the consolidation phase now. As I see it, the whole external environment has changed with new consumers, market forces and several new competitors in play. So the task before us is to redesign our operations to maintain market leadership." To put things into perspective, Carrier Aircon (in which Carrier Corporation and Carrier International Mauritius jointly hold 86.3 per cent) leads the Rs 1,200-crore AC Indian market with a 30 per cent share, followed by LG and Blue Star. In fact, the last two are the No 1 players in the two specific segments they are present in, namely, LG in the residential AC market and Blue Star in the commercial AC market. "Overall, we are still the market leader," claimed Kapoor.
The details of Carrier Aircon's new advertising plan will be worked out over this week.
© 2001 agencyfaqs!First Published : December 31, 2001