Some Ad Account Duties Shifted to Arnold Worldwide

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NEW YORK (Adage.com) -- Hershey Co. is parting ways with long time agency partners DDB Worldwide, New York, and Ogilvy & Mather, New York, and is handing many of their responsibilities to Arnold Worldwide, New York.
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Core chocolate brands
According to a statement from the marketer, Havas' Arnold will now handle communications programs for core chocolate brands including Hershey’s, Hershey’s Kisses and Reese’s, while existing partner North Castle Communications will handle duties for refreshment and sugar confectionery brands, including Ice Breakers, Twizzlers and Jolly Ranchers.

Hershey spent $136 million in advertising last year.

Media-buying duties, now at DDB sibling OMD, remain unchanged. The agencies are part of Omnicom Group.

This morning, prior to the release from Hershey, Ogilvy said it was resigning its Hershey account after a 35-year relationship. The WPP Group agency handled U.S. creative duties for the Kisses and Reese’s Peanut Butter Cup brands, which spent a combined $30 million on measured media in 2004, according to TNS Media Intelligence.

'Emerging conflict'
A press release from the agency attributed the move to “an emerging conflict with Hershey and other Ogilvy clients.” One of those clients is believed to be Kraft Foods.

Arnold declined to comment. A DDB spokeswoman couldn’t be reached for comment.

John Staffen, executive creative director at Arnold’s New York office, is a former DDB executive working on the Hershey’s account. He has been building the agency in part with other former DDB staff, including creative team Thom Baginski and Gary Rozanski and, more recently, head of broadcast production Celia Williams. Arnold New York’s exec VP Ned Russell also worked at DDB New York.

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Contributing: Stephanie Thompson

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