TOP MARKETING EXEC PARTS WITH ALLIED DOMECQ

Agency Status Remains Unclear Following Matt Wiant's Departure

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BOSTON (AdAge.com) -- Allied Domecq Spirits & Wines USA has parted ways with one of its top marketing executives, a spokesman for the marketer said.

The executive, Matt Wiant, had been senior vice president of marketing for equity brands. He left the company in a restructuring, the spokesman said.

His temporary replacement is Simon Cunningham, vice president of development brands. Mr. Cunningham will serve as acting regional marketing director, reporting to Allied Domecq's president, Richard Turner.

Agency shakeup?
What remains

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unclear is how Mr. Wiant's departure will affect Allied Domecq's agencies. Omnicom Group's BBDO Worldwide, Chicago, has been on the roster since 1999, handling Kahlua, Beefeater gin and Stolichnaya vodka. Interpublic Group of Cos.' dRush, New York, handles Sauza tequila.

The agencies could not be reached for comment.

Global strategy
Allied, the country's fifth-largest spirits company, is trying to align its brands under one global strategy.

The company had consolidated U.S. media planning for its liquor brands at its media buying agency, Zenith Media, New York.

Separately, Allied's partner for two ready-to-drink malt beverages, Miller Brewing Co., today announced the names of the drinks. A Stolichnaya beverage is called Stoli Citrona, and a Sauza tequila drink is Sauza Diablo.

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