The decision follows the consolidation of the creative account at the end of last year into O&M and the centralization of marketing policy into the European consumer marketing department at Crawley, West Sussex, in the U.K.
"When you have the same product, packaging and marketing platform worldwide, it makes a lot of sense to centralize marketing," says Glyn Harper, the newly appointed director of marketing, Europe, previously one of three directors for the region, covering the northern countries.
But "we have strong local organizations with strong relations with their customers and we can see the advantages of an approach where we can get the best of both: the local sensitivity and attention to detail and a consistent, coordinated strategy," he says.
The $30m ad budget for this year is a 10% increase on last, which was itself 10% up on 1995. The extra funds will be put behind the rollout of the Duracell Powercheck - a graduated indicator on the side of a battery which shows levels of energy - which launched on the AA battery last year. It is now being introduced to other batteries. Ralston Energy Systems Europe's Energizer brand has developed a similar system, though its is not graduated.
Under Duracell's new marketing set-up, media will be planned centrally and bought by The Network offices in local markets. Creative will be produced centrally and implemented locally, along with trade marketing activities.
Copyright April 1997, Crain Communications Inc.