A widescale review of UDV’s PR agencies is expected to get the
go-ahead when the drinks giant’s new marketing director comes on board
later this month.
Syl Saller, formerly marketing and development director at Allied Domecq
Retail in the US, will examine UDV’s entire marketing structure.
Since UDV’s parent company, Diageo, was created last year through the
merger of Guinness and GrandMet, the wine and spirits division has been
reviewing its agencies on a brand-by-brand basis. But, in June, PR Week
revealed that an overall review was likely to take place after a
marketing director was found.
UDV is understood to spend over pounds 600,000 a year on PR for its
brands, which include Piat d’Or, Di Saronno, Drambuie, Archer’s, whisky
brands J&B and Bell’s, Smirnoff, Gordon’s gin and Baileys Irish
The various accounts are spread between Berners Place, Jackie Cooper PR,
QBO, Mulcaster PR and Marketing, The Communication Group, Lexis and Mark
Borkowski Press and PR.
Saller’s arrival will follow UDV’s appointment last week of Borkowski to
handle a special project for Baileys, following a pitch involving up to
three other agencies.
The brief is believed to include providing support for a forthcoming
advertising campaign for the brand, to be created by J Walter
The PR agency will almost certainly be asked to further UDV’s attempts
to ’de-seasonalise’ the brand - 60 per cent of Baileys sales occur in
October, November and December - although Borkowski refused to comment
on the appointment.
UDV has been committing significant resources in an attempt to extend
Bailey’s appeal to younger people without alienating its usual market,
and has tried to achieve this through giving its advertising a
distinctly sexy slant.
Baileys accounts for a large share of UDV’s sales. The drink has a 60
per cent share of the cream liqueur market.