Joint effort for Tomy in UK PR restructure

Tomy, the Japanese toy brand, has hired freelance Jane Bookham and agency Attenborough Associates to handle PR for the next 12 months.

Tomy, the Japanese toy brand, has hired freelance Jane Bookham and agency Attenborough Associates to handle PR for the next 12 months.

The two pitched as a team against incumbent of two years Clareville Consultancy, for Tomy's crisis management, consumer and trade PR.

The new line-up worked in tandem at January's Toy Fair in London.

Activity for the year ahead includes the launch of merchandise relating to The Hoobs, Channel 4's new puppet series.

Tomy marketing director Sally Plumridge said the move was 'in line with our business, (as) our needs are changing and we now require the services of a PR team with excellent integrated creative and promotional skills'.

Merrigan Twelves will lead the Attenborough team, which will assist in executing PR strategy and handling day-to-day press enquiries. Twelves reports to Bookham who, in turn, reports to Plumridge at Tomy.

Bookham was formerly PR manager at Mothercare, a client of Attenborough Associates. She left a year ago, and was replaced by Alison Heeks.

Tomy is the biggest seller of pre-school toys in the UK. As well as its toy range, which includes Thomas the Tank Engine train sets, Mega-Sketcher and Tumblin' Monkeys, it makes baby monitors and baby carriers.

Attenborough Associates managing director Nick Attenborough said the work would include promoting the Tomy brand, as well as individual products. 'We always think of the brand. There's a generation of new parents born every day, so you can't rest on your laurels,' he said.

The Clareville Consultancy handled Tomy for just over two years. Managing director John Starr said independent evaluation showed that coverage on Tomy had doubled since they'd had the account, and that the score on message had increased.



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