Pfizer Selects McGarryBowen to Handle Creative Duties for Viagra

$120 Million Account Is Latest Chunk of Pharma Giant's Business to Move From McCann

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NEW YORK (AdAge.com) -- Pfizer today said it will shift consumer advertising duties for its $120 million Viagra account to Dentsu-owned McGarryBowen from its agency of five years, Interpublic Group of Cos.' McCann Erickson.

Advertising Age first reported the pharma giant had been reviewing ad duties for its blockbuster erectile-dysfunction drug quietly, and that the process was advancing rapidly.

A spokeswoman for Pfizer said McGarryBowen will serve as the new agency of record for the Viagra brand, but declined to comment further. Representatives for McGarryBowen and McCann could not be immediately reached.

This is the second sizable chunk of Pfizer business to move from the McCann family of companies to McGarryBowen in a matter of months. Earlier this year, the company shifted creative duties for its Chantix smoking cessation drug to McGarryBowen from McCann HumanCare.

Pfizer devoted $121 million to U.S. measured media for Viagra in 2008, and $57 million for the first half of 2009, according to TNS Media Intelligence.

Overall, Pfizer last year spent $1.29 billion marketing its various pharma brands, making it the 24th-largest advertiser in the nation, according to Advertising Age's DataCenter.

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UPDATE: After this story was published, a Pfizer spokeswoman said that while McGarryBowen is Viagra's agency of record, there may be further changes on the account as a broader review is taking place. She declined to elaborate.

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