Yamaha Motor India (YMI) has 'more or less' made up its mind. About the agency that would handle the advertising account of its soon-to-be-launched motorcycle brand Royal Star. Speaking exclusively to agencyfaqs! Nalin Kapoor, chief manager, marketing, YMI, said, "At this point in time, I would put it this way: We have shortlisted Mudra Communication to handle Royal Star, the new brand that we had displayed at the last Auto Expo. Why I say shortlisted is because we haven't signed on the dotted lines yet and some details still need to be sorted out."
agencyfaqs! readers would recall the story 'Yamaha calls for pitch; LML-FCB-Ulka part ways', ran on April 5, where we stated that Yamaha had called four agencies in Delhi to pitch for the advertising account of a new bike slated for launch in August. The story stated the agencies in the fray included FCB-Ulka, Mudra, Rediffusion and Contract. As it turns out there was a fifth agency too - and Hakuhodo Percept's Delhi branch had also thrown in its hat into the ring.
Interestingly, YMI hadn't invited roster agency TBWA Anthem - which handles the advertising accounts of YMI's Crux, Crux R and YBX 125 brands - for the pitch. Though official confirmation on this was not available, it seems the YMI brass was pretty upfront about keeping TBWA Anthem out of the whole process. "That is because YMI had decided it would have two agencies to handle two sets of brands," said an official close to the development.
The pitch took place in the first week of April. While the company remained tightlipped about its launch plans as well as the advertising direction it would take with the new brand, informal talks with the agencies involved in the pitch indicated that the advertising account of Royal Star would be in the Rs 8-9 crore range. The new motorcycle would have an engine capacity of 130-140-cc, and its price and positioning have not been decided yet. And, if agency sources are to be believed, YMI is planning to launch a second bike by the year-end, tentatively planned for December. "The launch plan for the second bike is still at a very nebulous stage," avers our source.
Kapoor indicated that no decision has been taken on the AOR account of Royal Star. "We are yet to figure out how we wish to align the media part of the business. However, we are certain there will not be another round of presentation for the same. We will select the media agency from among the five that have pitched already," he said. A senior official at Mudra, Delhi, added, "We have put in our best effort to get the full business."
No doubt, the YMI account was much sought after. The company's total ad spend last year was to the tune of Rs 20-25 crore. What makes this an interesting account for Mudra is the fact that the agency would be involved in crucial decisions like pricing and positioning of the new brand as well as its roll out plan. © 2002 agencyfaqs!