Callaway Golf, Y&R Part Ways

LOS ANGELES WPP Group’s Y&R has parted ways with Callaway Golf, according to sources.

The agency declined comment. The client could not be immediately reached.

Y&R handled only the Callaway-branded woods, irons, golf balls, brand marketing and women’s products, an estimated $15 million piece of the company’s overall business, per Nielsen Monitor-Plus. Across all its brands, Callaway spent $50 million on ads in 2007, per Nielsen. That spending supported brands such as Callaway, Odyssey, Ben Hogan and Top-Flite.
The agency won the business in July 2004 in a review against Dentsu’s Colby & Partners, Santa Monica, Calif., independent Doner, Irvine, Calif., and independent Matthews Evans Albertazzi, San Diego. Craig Evans, a principal in that firm, followed the account to Y&R, also in Irvine.
The agency developed Callaway’s current positioning, “A better game by design.”
KSL Media in Encino, Calif., is the media buying and planning incumbent. There is no indication that the media account is in play.
The brand primarily advertises on the Golf Channel and in golf publications, with some general market communications as well.
Earlier this year, director of marketing Scott White left Callaway for Adidas brand TaylorMade. President and CEO George Fellows hired Bill Knees as svp, marketing and John Melican as svp, brand management.