Skim the Advertising Age report below, followed by a brief MultiCultClassics perspective.
Quaker Awards $110M Account to Juniper Park
Capping Bad Day for Goodby, Incumbent Shop Loses Business After Just One Year
By Rupal Parekh
NEW YORK (AdAge.com) -- Quaker Foods has shifted creative duties on its $110 million portfolio of brands—including Quaker Oats, previously handled by Goodby Silverstein & Partners—to roster shop Juniper Park, Toronto.
The news comes as Goodby today lost out on its bid for the $204 million Volkswagen account, which went to Interpublic Group of Cos.’ Deutsch, Los Angeles.
The move is the marketer’s second agency shift within a year, though it has remained within the Omnicom Group family of agencies. The holding company’s Element 79, Chicago, was founded in 2001 to handle the Quaker business, and the shop hung onto it until it shifted one year ago to sibling Goodby in San Francisco. Juniper Park is an offshoot of Omnicom’s BBDO Worldwide.
In a statement, Kirsten Lynch, chief marketing officer at Quaker, said the new agency brings “strong strategic skills, a deep understanding of our consumer, and a track record of outstanding creative for PepsiCo.” Representatives for Goodby and Juniper Park could not be immediately reached.
For Juniper Park, the win further solidifies its relationship with Quaker parent PepsiCo; the shop has been working with the beverage and food giant since 2007, handling work for brands under Pepsi’s Frito-Lay North America division, including Lay’s potato chips and the SunChips brand.
Earlier this year, Juniper Park picked up creative for a couple of Quaker Foods brands such as Rice-A-Roni side dishes and Quaker rice snacks. Now it will assume ad duties for the full portfolio, which includes the famous Quaker Oats brand, Cap’n Crunch and Life cereals, and Chewy granola bars.
PepsiCo spent more than $110 million in domestic measured media on its Quaker Foods portfolio in 2008, down from about $140 million in 2007, according to TNS Media Intelligence.
This scenario seemingly has ties to the recent Hadji Williams perspective on AORs, which pondered why minority advertising agencies face difficulty in gaining such status. Williams often charges White shops and clients with collusion, denying others the chance to even vie for business.
Omnicom has historically executed pretty slick tactics to keep major clients within the global network. Indeed, when pitching for the Quaker business in 2008, Omnicom stacked the deck with TBWA\Chiat\Day, DDB, and Goodby Silverstein & Partners—and the incumbent was Omnicom-owned Element 79. Now the $110 million account shifts to Omnicom’s Juniper Park, without any indication of a formal competition.
Quaker is clearly an active participant in the privileged proceedings. The company CMO declared Juniper Park displayed “strong strategic skills, a deep understanding of our consumer, and a track record of outstanding creative for PepsiCo.” Guess prior experience is the new mandate—although it didn’t appear to help Goodby in the long run. It should be interesting to see if the reassignment affects Quaker’s minority shops. They’ll likely be dealing with fresh White concepts to translate for their prospective audiences.
In the end, it’s all just another example of our industry’s exclusive selection processes.