Edison Light On Tap From Hill, Holliday

BOSTON–Hill, Holliday, Connors, Cosmopulos is preparing a campaign to help launch Edison Light, the first beer from New Century Brewing Co.

Hill, Holliday is handling creative, media and public relations for what sources say will initially be a “seven figure” regional marketing campaign. The low-calorie lager debuts in Massachusetts and Rhode Island next month; national distribution is expected within the next two years. The budget is expected to rise significantly once the brand goes national in 2003, sources said.

Edison Light will target young men and women, aged 21-30, and go up against other mainstream light beer offerings; it will not be positioned as a microbrew.

A Hill, Holliday representative declined to disclose details, referring queries to client officials, who could not be reached. New Century is helmed by Rhonda Kallman, a former high-level executive with Boston Beer Co., brewer of Samuel Adams.

Hill, Holliday was tapped by New Century without a review, the agency representative said. Kallman’s positive impression of the Boston agency from 1998 — when Hill, Holliday unsuccessfully pitched Sam Adams — led to the agency’s selection to introduce Edison Light, the representative said.

In recent weeks, Boston Beer has approached agencies for creative ideas for Sam Adams, but has yet to call a full-blown review or make a switch from McCarthy Mambro Bertino, Boston.