Beats Out Bartle Bogle for $19 Million Account

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SAN FRANCISCO (AdAge.com) -- Starbucks today named independent ad agency Wieden & Kennedy, Portland, Ore., as its agency of record for its advertising account, following a review.

Creative and 'media support'
Billings were undetermined, but last year Starbucks spent $19 million on measured media, up from $15.5 million in 2002, according to TNS Media Intelligence/CMR. The account covers creative and what was termed "media support" for North America, but a Starbucks spokeswoman was unclear on whether it consisted of both media planning and buying, which is currently with Starcom MediaVest Group's Starlink, Chicago.

Wieden beat out Publicis Groupe's Bartle Bogle Hegarty, New York, for the account. A spokeswoman for Starcom MediaVest Group referred calls to the marketer.

Consultant Mercer Island Group of Mercer Island, Wash., handled the review, which began when incumbent LB Works resigned the account. The agency is being folded back into Leo Burnett USA, which handles competitor McDonald's globally. Burnett is part of Publicis Groupe.

The Starbucks spokeswoman said the brand plans to continue its growth in "nontraditional" ways "and that is very important to us."

Music initiative
For the time being, advertising will continue to focus on initiatives related to local communities. Specific assignments also will deal with launch of new beverage products and building the Starbucks music initiatives. Starbucks recently announced a program with Hewlett-Packard in which customers could order and carry out customized CDs along with their coffee brews.

Wieden executives will be involved in an immersion program, she said, in which they will work in stores and tour roasting plants.

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