[hayes, middlesex, u.k.] H.J. Heinz Co. has named Euro RSCG to handle its sauce advertising in Benelux, France, Germany and Nordic countries. Bejamens, Van Doorn Euro RSCG, Amsterdam, will be the lead agency. The sauce brands will be advertised separately in the U.K., according to a spokeswoman, and Bates Dorland, London, will continue to handle the account there.
French online services battle
[paris] Bertelsmann, America Online, Canal Plus and Cegetel are banding together to challenge France Telecom in the battle for online service subscribers. The new service, set to launch this spring but in need of regulatory approval, will have more than 200,000 members, making it the biggest such service in France. Cegetel, a subsidiary of Generale des Eaux, will contribute members of Havas On Line to the new venture.
VW pulls Last Supper outdoor ad
[paris] Volkswagen's French affiliate removed an outdoor board created by DDB France after the association of French bishops, Croyances et Liberties, issued a writ against it. The ad depicts a modern version of the 12 Apostles with Jesus Christ at the Last Supper table. The tagline reads, "Let us rejoice, my friends, for a new Golf has been born." According to the writ, the use of religious symbols for commercial purposes offended Christians. VW and its agency agreed to make a donation to the charity Secours Catholic, which provides crisis support to the needy. Croyances et Liberties has decided not to proceed with its lawsuit.
O&M wins Nokia business-to-business
[london] Nokia Telecommunications, the infrastructure arm of the Nokia Group, has named Ogilvy & Mather Worldwide as its lead marketing communications agency worldwide. The account does not affect Nokia's relationships with agencies handling consumer mobile phone accounts. O&M's work will support Nokia's international sales organization as it markets mobile and fixed networks. O&M's lead offices on the account will be Helsinki and London.
Nu Skin launches in Philippines
[manila] Nu Skin has launched its line of premium personal care products in the Philippines with a national newspaper campaign featuring model Christie Brinkley. Nu Skin also introduced its lower-priced line, Scion. Direct selling, now a $370 million industry in the Philippines, is growing at annual rate of between 20% to 30%.