Twinings switches to Fuel for new campaign

R Twinings & Co, the tea company owned by Associated British Foods (ABF), is to embark on a new consumer PR campaign after replacing its retained agency GCI with Fuel PR.

The agency change has been partly prompted by ABF’s £171m acquisition in October last year of Swiss pharmaceutical group Novartis’s beverage brands. Fuel already handles PR for two of them, the malt drink Ovaltine and low calorie hot chocolate drink Options.

From August, Fuel will also take on Twinings Speciality Tea (including Assam and Earl Grey), Twinings Infusions (fruit and herb flavours), Twinings Iced Tea and Jacksons of Piccadilly. Fuel’s remit will include corporate work as well as an issues and crisis element.

Twinings hired Jane Howard PR in 1995 and stayed with GCI when it took over the consumer shop in 1999. GCI London CEO Sue Ryan said: ‘We are working notice and will end our association with Twinings at the end of August. After eight years they decided it was time to look outside their existing PR operation. We are disappointed but philosophical – such reviews are not uncommon when clients and agencies have worked together for a long time.’

Neither Fuel nor Twinings would say what form the new campaign would take, but it will be overseen by Twinings UK marketing manager Elizabeth Edwards.

She also denied a refreshed consumer campaign was required for Twinings to combat the threat posed by the increasing popularity of coffee shop outlets such as Starbucks and Caffe Nero. She said: ‘The upsurge in coffee culture is not reflected in the retail sales of coffee. They are not providing particular competition for us.’

The UK tea market is worth around £78m a year in retail sales, with speciality teas accounting for £40m and infusions growing to £25m. The remainder is made up of other tea brands such as organic and decaffeinated.

Before commenting please read our rules for commenting on articles.

If you see a comment you find offensive, you can flag it as inappropriate. In the top right-hand corner of an individual comment, you will see 'flag as inappropriate'. Clicking this prompts us to review the comment. For further information see our rules for commenting on articles.

comments powered by Disqus

Latest Articles

John Lewis to tell brand story with "tasteful" 150th anniversary celebrations

John Lewis to tell brand story with "tasteful" 150th anniversary celebrations

Department store John Lewis is to use its 150th anniversary this year to talk about its history, which "not enough people know about", according to director of communications Peter Cross.

Labour hires Obama election strategist David Axelrod to fight General Election

Labour hires Obama election strategist David Axelrod to fight General Election

The man who helped Barack Obama win the 2008 and 2012 US presidential elections is to work for Labour along with members of his team.

Sky adds Fever PR to its roster after splitting with Cake

Sky adds Fever PR to its roster after splitting with Cake

Pay-TV giant Sky has added Fever PR to its agency line-up for a wide-ranging brief covering products and services.

Max Clifford trial jury to continue deliberations after Easter break

Max Clifford trial jury to continue deliberations after Easter break

The jury in the trial of celebrity publicist Max Clifford has been sent home for Easter and will reconvene on Tuesday for further deliberations about its verdicts on 11 charges of indecent assault.

Home Office brings in Munro & Forster to campaign against FGM

Home Office brings in Munro & Forster to campaign against FGM

The Home Office has tasked Munro & Forster (M&F) with supporting its campaign to eradicate female genital mutilation (FGM) as part of a wider retained brief.