Droga5 Tapped to Handle Creative for Newcastle Beer

Marks Second Heineken USA Account After Nabbing Amstel Light

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Droga5 has won creative duties for another Heineken USA brand, picking up Newcastle Brown Ale after winning Amstel Light late last year.

Newcastle was previously at MDC Partners-owned Vitro. Heineken USA gave independent Droga5 the assignment without a review, the importer told Ad Age .

"The brand is poised for growth and we have a unique opportunity to educate new consumers through a fresh campaign," said Colin Westcott-Pitt, VP-marketing for the brand, in a statement.

Said Vitro, in a statement: "Newcastle Brown Ale is a phenomenal brand, and we're incredibly proud of our traditional, social and experiential work for them over the last nine and a half years. ...We wish them nothing but the best."

Newcastle, the nation's 10th-largest imported beer, has grown shipments by 8.7% since 2006 but was flat last year, according to Beer Marketer's Insights.

Under Vitro, the brand in 2011 ran its first TV advertising since Heineken USA acquired it in 2008. Spots running in select markets positioned the beer as a darker-colored, but easy-drinking brew with the tagline "taste the lighter side of dark."

Newcastle's marketing spend is low: The importer spent a little more than $1 million in measured media on the brand in 2011, according to Kantar Media.

As agency of record, Droga5 will handle strategic and creative development in the U.S., as well as digital. David Droga, founder and creative chairman of the independent shop, in a statement described Newcastle as "a quality beer that doesn't take itself too seriously."

The new campaign is expected to debut this year, along with new advertising for Amstel Light, which Droga5 won from Dallas-based Richards Group in December.

For Droga5 , the assignment follows the win of a new gum brand Kraft Foods is expected to unveil this year.

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