Levi Strauss, the world’s leading jeans manufacturer, has hired
Exposure and Edelman PR Worldwide as it prepares to relaunch its brand
and enhance its corporate image.
The company is using PR to fight back after global sales fell from a
high in 1996 of pounds 4.4 million to pounds 3.7 million by the end of
1998. Rivals such as The Gap and Calvin Klein are providing increasingly
Levi’s has hired lifestyle PR specialist Exposure to relaunch the Levi’s
brand to the trade press and launch its spring 2000 range.
The manufacturer is planning to cut its product range, refit its
flagship store in Regent Street, and sell its products through
department stores as well as its own boutiques.
Levi Strauss presence and publicity director for Europe Lesa Musatto
said: ’We are putting a very clear focus on innovation in all areas of
our business, including product, consumer placement and retail
Shilland and Co, Levi’s pan-European agency of record, is expected to
handle the consumer launch of the spring 2000 range and reposition the
brand to consumers later in the year. Shilland has held the Levi’s
account for 14 years. Managing director Peter Shilland was previously a
marketing director at Levi’s.
Edelman was hired by the manufacturer this week after a competitive
pitch to handle corporate and government relations across Europe, Middle
East and Africa. Part of the agency’s brief is to promote Levi’s
corporate citizenship credentials as the debate over how multinationals
become involved in communities rages.
The account will be headed by deputy managing director for Edelman
Brussels Laurentien Brinkhorst, who will work under Levi’s public
affairs director Alan Christie.
Earlier this year, Levi’s merged its corporate, community affairs and
government relations (PR Week, 2 April). The company uses around 50 PR
agencies around Europe.