Danone UK&I hires PR agency for 'seven-figure' consolidated account

Food giant Danone has appointed Ketchum to a new consolidated account covering consumer, corporate and trade comms for the UK and Ireland, PRWeek has learned.

PRWeek understands the account is worth seven figures.

Ketchum’s remit spans press office, creative campaigns, social strategy, influencer engagement, healthcare/HCP comms, trade news and thought leadership as well as building and executing a corporate comms programme alongside Danone.

The agency works across all of the client's consumer-facing categories: Essential Dairy and Plant-Based Products (including Alpro, Actimel and Activia), Waters (Harrogate Spring) and Early Life Nutrition (Aptamil and Cow&Gate).

The pitch process began in March 2022 after Danone identified a need to consolidate a range of consumer, corporate and trade briefs under one consultancy – it previously worked with a number of agencies. The move came after Danone combined its four categories into one UK & Ireland business.

PRWeek understands several agencies were involved at the initial stages, with no more than four at the pitch stage.

Ketchum's remit for 2022 is focused on onboarding, 2023 planning across all brands, and the building of an earned media measurement framework.

The Danone business is being led at Ketchum by Sophie Raine, MD consumer brands, who said: “This was a first for Danone; consolidation of several agencies into one to manage its whole portfolio. We’ve been working with Danone for two months now and our focus has been getting under the skin of its incredible market-leading brands and looking at how we supercharge them creatively. Planning for 2023 is well under way and we can’t wait to bring our culture-first campaigns to life and crucially show the impact of our work on Danone’s business.”

David Jiscoot, chief digital officer at Danone UK&I, said: “Ketchum impressed us during the pitch process with cut-through creativity anchored in effectiveness. Next to their purpose-driven mission, this makes Ketchum the perfect partner for Danone’s ambition.”

Freuds will continue to work on Danone's water brand Evian as part of the agency's global remit.

Heather Blundell, chief growth officer for Europe at Ketchum, said: “This has arguably been among the biggest pitches in the industry this year and we’re delighted Danone has chosen Ketchum as their agency partner. The pitch process was exceptional, with the team at Danone fully invested end-to-end. We have spent so much time together over the past few months -refining the approach, ironing out any concerns and co-creating the right team set up and structure to service such a significant and exciting piece of business.”

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