Bally gives TBWA new leisure brand launch

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LONDON -- Bally, the Swiss shoe maker and retailer, has named TBWA Simons Palmer, London, to launch a new leisure brand that will include footwear and clothing. The new brand will have a separate identity to Bally and will be a radical departure from Bally's traditional upmarket women's shoe business.

Executives say the account is worth $48m. EuroSpace will be handling media planning and placement and all the executions of the advertising will be handled in London for all countries.

The new brand, details of which are not being outlined until the autumn, will be launched to the consumer in spring 1998. The current plan is to launch the brand simultaneously in the U.S. and across Europe. The brand will be rolled out to other world markets in 1999.

It is possible that a number of existing Bally stores will be totally rebranded.

Werner Schnorf, vice president of Bally, says: "We needed a highly creative agency as we want to establish new rules in a market that is very predictable. TBWA Simons Palmer were our first choice but we held a competitive pitch to examine ideas from the U.S. and Europe in addition to the U.K. This is a very important and significant initiative for Bally."

TBWA Simons Palmer positions itself as what it calls a "mainstream alternative" ad agency run by entrepreneurs backed by the worldwide TBWA network. Its best known work includes Nike, the launch of the Nissan Micra, Sony Playstation and Wonderbra's "Hello Boys" campaign.

Copyright June 1997, Crain Communications Inc.

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