In a surprise development, Parle Agro has awarded Percept H (the erstwhile Percept Advertising) with the creative duties of four of its beverage brands. The brands in question are flagship mango drink Frooti, fruit-milk beverage N-joi, mineral water brand Bailley and apple drink Appy. While Frooti and Bailley move from Everest Integrated Communications, N-joi and Appy move from Quadrant Communications. The consolidation of the four brands with Percept comes in the wake of a two-way pitch that also involved TBWA India, and the size of the consolidated business is pegged between Rs 10 and Rs 15 crore.
Confirming the news of Percept's appointment, Alaka Bhosle, management consultant, Parle Agro, told agencyfaqs! that Percept and TBWA had been invited to pitch for the business roughly a month ago. "It was essentially a strategy and creative pitch that happened over two rounds," she informs. For the record, the media duties for these brands is with Initiative Media, which continues to be the AOR. Bhosle adds that the pitch was aimed at consolidating all four brands with one agency, as "henceforth, we want to deal with just one agency". agencyfaqs! understands that Everest and Quadrant were not invited to the pitch, but Bhosle does not reveal the reasons for this, or for moving the businesses out of the two agencies.
What she does reveal are reasons for going with Percept. "What appealed to us about Percept was their strategic thinking, their logic and the manner in which they conceptualized things," she elaborates. "Their recommendations were akin to our vision for the brands, and they even added to that vision in a big way in terms of their creatives." Bhosle also explains that although all four brands have been lodged with one agency, "we will be looking at a structure where different teams from this agency work on different brands".
agencyfaqs! also spoke to Rajesh Pant, CEO, Percept H, who had this to say. "Parle Agro has certainly been a very good acquisition, and I am very happy. Prakash (Chauhan) and Alaka were very thorough and painstaking in the way they approached this pitch, and I am glad Percept has been found suitable for the job. They did not want just another agency, and I think they saw that the Percept of today has a much-improved strategic and creative outlook - the result of a whole lot of changes the agency has gone through. I think this impressed them." Bhosle, for her part, says that Parle Agro is looking for "partnership, involvement, commitment and complete honesty" in the association.
Interestingly, news that Parle Agro was looking for a new agency for Frooti had been surfacing routinely over the past year or so. And every time, the rumours simply died down. However, sometime in September-October 2002, Parle Agro had indeed met a few agencies for the launch of Frooti in PET bottles (Frooti PET was launched in March this year). Subsequently, the company had decided to continue with the services of Everest. For the record, Everest had won the Frooti and Bailley accounts late in 2000, and the agency's famous 'Digen Verma' campaign (for Frooti) broke in the summer of 2001. N-joi and Appy, on the other hand, had been awarded to Quadrant in mid-2001.
Speaking about the new communication for the four brands, Bhosle says that everything would depend on the marketing needs of the brands. "We are in the process of reviewing the marketing needs," she says. "The second season for these brands starts in September. Whether we advertise at that time, or whether we wait till the next season (March-April) is something we have to decide upon." She does, however, add that some advertising will "definitely happen in the second season this year". © 2003 agencyfaqs!