The Interscience group has set up a new agency, Needfire, to focus
on chronic long term illnesses like breast cancer and Aids.
Needfire is already working for US pharmaceutical giant Merck on an
international brief for the Aids drug Crixivan (indinavir). The agency
has a strong focus on the international arena and consumer issues.
Headed up by Ian Poitier, Needfire has a core team of three people as
well as the resources of the Interscience group.
’Chronically ill patients have a significant and loud voice,’ said
’Needfire recognises that lots of patients are less conservative than
the staff who are going to be treating them.’
Needfire plans to make use of Poitier’s background in consumer
advertising, with Bartle Bogle Hegarty. He has co-ordinated World Aids
Day and is also chair of the Aids prevention charity Rubberstuffers.
’The structure is more like an advertising agency,’ Poitier said. ’We
have one person managing the account, but a whole series of specialist
’For example, one person handles media, one does strategic planning,
another the consumer patient side. Your team will change, depending on
your needs,’ he said.
Poitier added that the new agency would remain small, with a porfolio of
between five and ten clients.