Euro Named Agency of Record for Flagship Heineken Brands

$110 Million Beer Account Was With Wieden

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CHICAGO (AdAge.com) -- Heineken USA has named Euro RSCG, New York, its agency of record for its flagship lager brands.

Heineken

Euro, which already handles Heineken USA's fast-growing Dos Equis brand, won the Heineken Lager and Heineken Premium Light accounts following a review involving Heineken's existing roster shops, including incumbent Wieden & Kennedy, StrawberryFrog and TBWA/Chiat/Day.

The marketer doled more than $110 million in measured media spending last year on the brands.

Euro learned of its victory in the pitch when a Heineken beer truck arrived at the agency and began unloading beer for a victory party.

Euro takes over the brand at a difficult juncture. The recession has led many consumers to opt for less expensive beers, which has hurt imported beers generally and in particular the largest, most established brands. At the same time, however, Heineken Lager -- and its larger rival, Crown Imports' Corona Extra -- are increasingly viewed by consumers as mainstream beers that have lost some of their former cache, and many import drinkers have been turning to less established brands, such as Anheuser-Busch InBev's Stella Artois, Crown's Modelo Especial and Heineken's own Dos Equis instead.

Dos Equis
Heineken's challenge has been steepened by seemingly constant turnover among its agencies and executives. Euro will be Heineken Lager's fourth agency of record since 2006. In an interview, Chief Marketing Officer Christian McMahan said that Euro's work on Dos Equis, which has ridden it's "Most Interesting Man in the World" mascot to sales gains, got the agency into the review, but that it's insights on Heineken's brand and consumers won the day.

Mr. McMahan said Euro's work will involve the "Give Yourself a Good Name" platform originally developed by Wieden. Euro's co-CEO, Andrew Benett, said the assignment was "difficult, but definitely achievable."

StrawberryFrog founder Scott Goodson said he hoped the agency to continue to enjoy a "wonderful working relationship" with Heineken. Other runners-up either declined comment or didn't immediately return calls.