Johnnie Walker Taps Anomaly as Global Agency

Incumbent BBH Was Behind Iconic 'Keep Walking' Campaign

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Credit: Vinay Bavdekar

Johnnie Walker has tapped Anomaly as its new global agency of record following a competitive pitch, the brand said Thursday. Anomaly was up against Ogilvy, Wieden & Kennedy, BBDO and incumbent BBH for a shot at the creative business, according to executives familiar with the matter.

"A new and exciting era lies ahead for Johnnie Walker," Guy Escolme, Johnnie Walker global brand director, said in a statement. "In Anomaly we believe we have a partner who will help us take fresh strides with stunning creative that will support the brand's future global growth."

The Diageo-owned whisky brand had been with BBH for the last 15 years, and the agency was behind Johnnie Walker's iconic "Keep Walking" campaign.

"This is obviously disappointing news but we will keep walking," said Nigel Bogle, co-founder of BBH, in an email provided by a spokeswoman.

Talk of a review began earlier this year when Anomaly released "A Gentlemen's Wager," a branded film promoting Johnnie Walker Blue Label featuring actors Jude Law and Giancarlo Giannini.

Diageo ranks 88th in Ad Age's ranking of the 100 largest global marketers, spending $380 million in measured media in 2013, an increase of 24.6% over the previous year, according to Ad Age's DataCenter. It spent $21.9 million on Johnnie Walker in the U.S. in 2013, according to estimates from Kantar Media.

Anomaly referred inquiries to the client.

Wieden & Kennedy could not immediately be reached. Ogilvy and BBDO declined to comment.

Contributing: Emma Hall

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