MARS REASSIGNS FOUR D'ARCY BRANDS

TBWA Joins BBDO and Grey in Three-Agency Alignment

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NEW YORK (AdAge.com) -- Mars today announced the reassignment of its accounts that had been with its former agency, D'Arcy Masius Benton & Bowles.

The shift, spurred by Mars' decision last week to terminate its relationship with the Bcom3 Group shop, allows Mars to "retain its three-agency roster," the company said in a statement.

Omnicom shops
Omnicom Group's TBWA/Chiat/Day, Los Angeles, received accounts for the brands Seeds of Change, Uncle Ben's and Whiskas, while Omnicom sibling BBDO Worldwide was handed the Skittles brand. The agency already has a number of other Mars' brands including Snickers, M&M's, Dove, Celebrations and Cesar dog food.

TBWA replaces D'Arcy

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as Mars' third network with the addition of the three brands. Grey Global Group's Grey Worldwide, the other agency, handles brands including Twix, Starburst and Pedigree.

Mars spent $30 million in measured media on Uncle Ben's last year and $18 million on Whiskas while Seeds of Change, Mars' organic food line, received no ad spending, according to Taylor Nelson Sofres' CMR. Skittles received $18.7 million in spending last year.

Assignment for the former D'Arcy brands outside the U.S. has not been determined, though the Mars statement said they will remain within the three-agency roster. Billings were not disclosed.