NEWS: Novartis hands global account to Ruder Finn

Ruder Finn, has won a pounds 29 million global communications and advertising contract from Novartis, the Swiss pharmaceutical giant formed earlier this year by the merger of Sandoz and Ciba-Geigy.

Ruder Finn, has won a pounds 29 million global communications and

advertising contract from Novartis, the Swiss pharmaceutical giant

formed earlier this year by the merger of Sandoz and Ciba-Geigy.



The appointment, which is Novartis’ first agency hiring on an

international scale since the merger was announced in March, follows a

two-month pitching process involving 12 public relations and advertising

firms.



Due to start in autumn after the merger has obtained regulatory approval

from the European and US authorities, the programme will involve a

corporate identity campaign and managing internal communications for its

130,000 employees worldwide.



Work will include media relations, events management, advertising,

direct marketing and Internet promotion. The account, which has been

allocated a total budget of pounds 29 million over the next 12 months,

will be led from Ruder Finn’s New York headquarters by president Kathy

Bloomgarden. She in turn reports to Walter von Wartburg, Novartis’

designated head of communications in Basle.



‘We felt that for a launch as important as this you really need to use

all elements of marketing,’ said Bloomgarden. ‘The important thing is to

present what the emerging company means in terms of its name, heritage

and what it represents.’



Ruder Finn, which has a long standing relationship with both Sandoz and

Ciba-Geigy, handled press relations for the original merger

announcement. Novartis has yet to decide which agency it will use for

financial public relations.



Sandoz and Ciba respectively retain Gavin Anderson and Dewe Rogerson.



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