Hopes to Bolster Sagging Sales

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CINCINNATI (AdAge.com) -- Rayovac Corp. will roll out an improved version of its flagship value-priced alkaline battery brand in May that will be backed by newspaper coupons and yet-to-be determined advertising starting in June.

John Daggett, marketing services director, said ad plans for the launch -- including whether longtime brand pitchman Michael Jordan will appear -- remain under review.

WPP Group's Y&R Advertising, Chicago, is agency of record.

The Madison, Wis.-based company says the improved batteries last up to 11% longer and come in new black and neon-blue packs.

Rayovac's sales fell 2.3% to $630.9 million last year, the first decline in four years, as the value brand came under heavy pressure from product improvements, new ads and promotions from Energizer Holdings and Gillette Co.'s Duracell.

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