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Kellogg Consolidation Hands Major Brand-Building Work to Burnett

Agency Roster Reduced to Five, JWT Loses Business Across Globe

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A correction has been made in this story. See below for details.

CHICAGO (AdAge.com) -- Kellogg Co. has trimmed the global agency roster on its $1 billion account, consolidating "brand building" under Publicis Groupe's Leo Burnett in North America, Europe and Latin America.

Burnett's gain appears to be JWT's pain. At the outset of the review, Kellogg indicated to agencies it hoped to cut its roster to about five shops from around 30. The two busiest of those 30 shops, by far, have historically been Leo Burnett and WPP's JWT. Prior to the consolidation, Burnett worked in 32 countries, including the U.S., and JWT toiled in 21.

A spokeswoman said the "majority of our business" will be conducted with four shops as a result of the consolidation -- Burnett, JWT, Millward Brown and TNS -- but that the company may be "working with separate digital and below-the-line agencies as needed."

The shift seems to bounce JWT out of a number of markets where it had been working: Colombia, Chile, Venezuela, France, Italy, Spain, Benelux (Netherlands, Belgium, Luxembourg), the Nordics (Sweden, Norway, Denmark, Finland) and the U.K.

JWT, for its part, will be receiving Kellogg's consolidated business in the Asia-Pacific region, which is likely small consolation considering it already had the work in such major markets as Australia, China and Japan.

"We've enjoyed a long-term, successful partnership with JWT in Europe and Latin America," a Kellogg spokeswoman said in a statement. "This decision is not a reflection on the quality of their work, but rather reflects the needs of our business to have greater alignment across our marketing model moving forward. While changes of this nature are never easy, we believe greater alignment across our marketing model is critical in helping us achieve best-in-class strategy and execution."

It wasn't immediately clear what the impact on Kellogg's smaller agency relationships would be. In the U.S. alone, Kellogg works with Rivet, Arc, Cole & Weber, Marketing Drive, Amazon Advertising, Lapiz and WonderGroup on a mix of creative and below-the-line functions.

Publicis' Starcom handles its media buying and planning.

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Contributing: Rupal Parekh, Emily Bryson York



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CORRECTION: An earlier version of this story incorrectly stated that Kellogg's decision to consolidate most of its global advertising chores with Leo Burnett was part of the company procurement-driven Project Silver initiative to identify preferred vendors and cut costs. A Kellogg spokeswoman said the Burnett decision was made independent of that process.

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