Kraft's PR firms don't need to worry after ad agencies get the ax

Kraft Foods fired most of its advertising agencies last week, but it will continue to work with all 12 of its PR firms.

Kraft brand Velveeta

CHICAGO: Kraft Foods will retain all 12 of its PR firms in North America despite firing most of its advertising agencies last week.

"We feel good about our [PR] agency roster," said Russ Dyer, senior director of corporate affairs at Kraft. "We’ve got a lot of talented agencies, a good mix of different skill sets, and we continue to be pleased with a lot of the work."

Kraft’s PR agency roster is comprised of Brunswick Group; Edelman; Henson Consulting; Hunter Public Relations; Ketchum; Mitchell Communications Group; Olson Engage; Taylor; Weber Shandwick; MorganMyers; and Citizen Optimum and Harbinger in Canada.

The company said Friday that it will cut its advertising agencies from more than a dozen to only four: McGarryBowen, Leo Burnett, Taxi, and Canada-based CP+B/Union.

Dyer told PRWeek that part of the strategy behind trimming its ad agencies is that Kraft has strong relationships with certain firms that it has fostered over the years. Leo Burnett and McGarryBowen are both based in Kraft’s hometown of Chicago, which is "one of the bonuses," Dyer added.

Kraft reported an 11% drop in profit, year-over-year, for the third quarter of 2014. The company partly attributed its sales slump to price hikes for products such as Velveeta and Jell-O.

In 2011, when Kraft decided to split into two independent businesses, its PR agency partners were also unaffected.

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