Deutsch/LA Wins Dr Pepper

LOS ANGELES Interpublic Group’s Deutsch/LA has won lead agency status on Cadbury Schweppes Americas Beverages’ Dr Pepper following a review, the client has confirmed. Ad spending on the brand was $35 million last year, down from $45 million in 2006, per Nielsen Monitor-Plus.

The win, which excludes Fountain Classics and Diet Dr. Pepper, represents Deutsch’s first foray into the carbonated soft drinks category.

“We looked at a number of agencies, and each of them brought its own unique vision to the project,” said Sean Gleason, client svp, in a statement. “However, the Deutsch/LA team brought an approach that quickly grew into more than a project. Much more. We feel we have an exciting new campaign for Dr Pepper.”

Deutsch/LA pitched at the client’s headquarters in Plano, Texas, last month against independent Droga5 and MDC Partners’ Cliff Freeman and Partners, both in New York, per sources. The incumbent was WPP Group’s Young & Rubicam in San Francisco, which had earlier submitted new ideas to the client. (Y&R had handled Dr Pepper since the late 1960s.)
“We had so much to work with — a great name, a unique flavor, a product loved by millions — it allowed us to cover the gambit of creative options,” said Mike Sheldon, president of Deutsch/LA in Marina del Rey, Calif. “We provided so many great creative options — nontraditional, creative advertising and digital. The client changed its mind from project work to agency of record.”

Media continues to be handled by IPG’s Initiative in Los Angeles.