Hachette Rolls Out A-B Red Carpet

William Morris pairs corporate clients

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%%STORYIMAGE_RIGHT%% In a deal that weds the branding needs of two of its corporate clients, William Morris Consulting has brokered a program between Anheuser-Busch and Hachette Filipacchi Media U.S.'s Premiere.

The arrangement, which began in the fourth quarter of last year and will run for a year, has Anheuser-Busch, previously not an advertiser in Premiere, buying ad pages every month and in return receiving sponsorship and integration opportunities with the mag's "Signature A-Series" of film-industry events.

"A-B is about marrying the advertising component to a physical presence," said Paul Bricault, senior VP at William Morris. The brewer of brands such as Budweiser and Michelob now has the opportunity to tie into such Premiere-hosted event platforms as "Women in Hollywood," the Sundance Film Festival, and the Cannes Film Festival. "Basically, we've brought them a series of A-level events, which allow their brand to be sampled, seen and experienced by the A-list. They recognize the power and influence of that A-list," said Paul Turcotte, VP-publisher of Premiere. He added that the magazine will also do a couple film screening series for A-B in select markets, where the company will be able to cater to their regional distributors as well as readers.

%%PULLQUOTE_LEFT%% Bricault said the deal with Premiere offers A-B a print platform to supplement its overall entertainment strategy, which encompasses TV, film, theater, the Internet (with Kevin Spacey's Triggerstreet.com) and the Tribeca Film Festival.

William Morris's formal monthly retainer relationship with Hachette was inked a year ago and the contract has just been renewed for another year. "The essence of the strategy is to extend the reach and appeal of [Hachette titles] as extended platforms for marketers to access entertainment," said Bricault.

Turcotte envisions these "extended platforms" for Premiere to potentially include mobile wireless applications as well as cable TV. In fact, with WMA's guidance, he's exploring a possible TV project with the AMC network.

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