Clairol, Intuition split

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Bristol-Myers Squibb's Clairol unit split with Intuition Group, New York, the WPP Group unit formed in 1997 to handle marketing programs aimed at women. A Clairol spokeswoman would not confirm the decision, but executives close to the company said the billings will likely be split between Clairol agencies Foote, Cone & Belding and the Kaplan Thaler Group, both New York. Earlier this month, Clairol moved its Nice 'n Easy brand to Kaplan Thaler Group, the agency for Clairol's Daily Defense, Aussie haircare and Herbal Essences shampoo and body wash brands. Clairol had previously terminated the now-defunct Wells Rich Greene BDDP in 1997, which led to the shop's eventual demise in early 1998.

A statement from Intuition stated the two split ``by mutual consent,'' but an executive close to the agency said the loss of Nice 'n Easy made it unprofitable to continue serving Clairol.

Intuition, a spinoff of J. Walter Thompson USA, New York, was formed last year to insulate JWT's Clairol business from conflicts with client Unilever. WPP Group is expected to decide shortly on Intuition's future. Intuition opened with approximately $60 million in JWT's in Clairol accounts including Nice 'n Easy, Loving Care, Lasting Color, Ultress, Glints, Natural Instincts and the 1998 launch of Revitalique hair color.

Copyright February 1999, Crain Communications Inc.

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