Wieden & Kennedy Gets U.S. Trident Creative

Incumbent Saatchi Holds Onto International Duties

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Wieden & Kennedy has scooped up more business from Mondelez International, this time winning U.S. creative duties for Trident.

It's a surprising shift considering the incumbent, Publicis Groupe's Saatchi & Saatchi, won the global account just 16 months ago. Saatchi is, however, retaining Trident for non-U.S. markets, the marketer told Ad Age.

The more decentralized approach comes after Trident in April launched its first global campaign called "See What Unfolds" in a move that a spokeswoman at the time described as one that's meant to "project that one Trident message."

That campaign came before Kraft Foods last fall split into two separate companies: Mondelez has global snack and candy brands, while Kraft Foods Group has North American grocery and beverage brands.

Asked today about the change in Trident strategy, a Mondelez spokeswoman said: "We still certainly believe in the power of global agencies and continue to work that way on many of our global brands." But she added that gum is a "challenged category" in the states. And the move to Wieden & Kennedy, which will handle the account from Portland, is "an opportunity to think about a new approach to the business in the U.S. market and look for specific opportunities for the brand in the U.S. from an advertising perspective," the spokeswoman added.

Trident revenue in the third quarter fell by "low single digits," Mondelez said on an earnings call in November. "Although the brand grew in developing markets, it was more than offset by weakness in developed markets," CEO Irene Rosenfeld told analysts. "To be frank, gum has been disappointing for quite some time, and it's taking us longer to change the trajectory than we anticipated. We have, however, taken a number of steps to fix our performance and we expect to see gradual improvement over the next year."

Wieden & Kennedy is expected to debut a new U.S. campaign for the gum by the summer. The account adds to the agency's Mondelez roster, which includes the Stride gum account that is handled from the shop's London office. The agency also created a Super Bowl TV commercial for Oreo, which is expected to be followed by another ad soon.

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