$45 Mil. Novartis Selects FCB

NEW YORK Novartis today confirmed its selection of Foote Cone & Belding here to handle creative chores on its Gerber account.

Estimated billings are $45 million.

In a statement, the client said, “FCB won the account based upon its ability to provide full services across advertising and marketing platforms on a global basis.”

The Interpublic Group shop participated in a review in which Havas’ Euro RSCG and WPP Group’s Grey, both New York roster agencies of Novartis, also made final presentations in late February.

The incumbent, independent Noble BBDS in Chicago, also participated, sources said. The Parsippany, N.J., client has been testing creative submissions for the past several weeks, sources said, and began negotiating with FCB earlier this week.

Gerber’s line of baby products includes food, nursing bottles, pacifiers, vitamin drops, and teething-relief and skin-care products. Sources said the creative account encompasses all of these product lines as well as integrated efforts (direct mail, promotions) regarding its Web site, www.gerber.com, which offers new parent and baby care advice.

Media duties, handled by WPP’s MindShare, were not part of the review.

This story updates an item posted on May 17 with client confirmation of FCB’s win.