Pune-based two-wheeler manufacturer Kinetic Motors has appointed Contract Advertising to handle the creative advertising account of its forthcoming range of Italian scooters. The business, which is valued at Rs 15-20 crore in annualized spends, was awarded to Contract yesterday, and the news has been confirmed by both the client and the agency. Contract, for the record, already handles the creative duties of Kinetic's scooterette brand, Zing. The media function for all Kinetic scooter and scooterette brands is with Madison Communications.
Earlier this year, Kinetic Motors had acquired the rights to manufacture and sell seven scooters of Bologna-based two-wheeler designer and manufacturer, Italjet. The Italian scooter range that Contract has now been commissioned to handle comprises these seven models "targeting various price segments and consumer mindsets" which are to be launched "over the next two to three years", informs Sulajja Firodia Motwani, joint managing director, Kinetic Motors.
Interestingly, a couple of months ago, Kinetic Motors had called for a pitch for its existing Indian scooters portfolio, which essentially consists of the Kinetic Nova and the less advertised Kinetic Zoom (originally the Kinetic Honda). While Kinetic Motors chooses not to disclose details pertaining to that pitch, the picture that emerges shows that Contract has, for now, been awarded only the Italian scooters account (it will, of course, retain scooterette brand Zing). "As of now, we are talking about the Italian models that Kinetic has acquired from Italjet," says Vikas Bahl, associate vice-president, Contract Advertising. "This does not include any other models that the company may also develop."
Interestingly, Kinetic is still in the process of choosing a communications partner for the Nova and Zoom, which were previously with FCB-Ulka (For the record, Grey handles the motorcycle, moped and corporate accounts of Kinetic). "Kinetic and Contract have shared a very strong relationship over the last two years, where Contract has launched their successful scooterette, Zing. We are certain the relationship will strengthen over the years," Bahl adds.
In fact, Bahl believes that the relationship that Contract shares with the client contributed significantly towards the Italian scooters account coming the agency's way. "To begin with, the account came to us on the basis of the great work done on Kinetic Zing, and our understanding of the two-wheeler market," he says. "Kinetic also believes in the philosophy of long-term partnerships, and this will strengthen the relationship the two organizations share. Also, Contract's strategic and creative thinking behind the business - which, given the competitive nature of this market, is very critical - also worked in its favour."
Commenting on the primary communication challenges that Kinetic and Contract would be faced with vis-à-vis the Italian scooters range, Motwani says, "Given the fact that motorcycles have been eating into this (scooter) segment over the last few years, it is critical to revamp the market. The product and the communication will need to work in tandem to achieve this objective. Kinetic believes that this market has huge potential, and will expand rapidly with excitement and innovation at the product level. Which is what will be revived through the Italian range."
Motwani adds that the company plans to spend "substantially", in terms of advertising. "We expect the modern scooter market to grow at about 20 per cent per year, and there will be much excitement created by the arrival of the Italian scooters, as they come with highly futuristic and exciting designs," she informs. "These scooters will be the drivers of Kinetic's imagery as a world-class scooter manufacturer, and also of the entire scooter market in India. In terms of ad spends, very roughly, per year, about Rs 15-20 crore will be invested in the initial launch phase of these models." Â© 2004 agencyfaqs!