NEW YORK–After six years as little more than a tiny blip on Johnson & Johnson’s screen, DDB Needham has been welcomed into the consumer products company’" data-categories = "" data-popup = "" data-ads = "Yes" data-company = "[]" data-outstream = "yes" >

J&J admits DDB Needham to the inner sanctum By Alison Fahe

NEW YORK–After six years as little more than a tiny blip on Johnson & Johnson’s screen, DDB Needham has been welcomed into the consumer products company’

As part of last week’s advertising agency realignment, DDB Needham was awarded two big-name brands: Shower to Shower and Clean & Clear. Although domestic billings are said to be in the $30 million range, the international portion of the business could be much larger. Moreover, as one of four core worldwide agencies, along with Saatchi & Saatchi Advertising, Lintas: Worldwide and McCann-Erickson, the shop is positioned for new product assignments.
Now that J&J has realigned its creative in the U.S., it will examine its $200 million media buying assignment with Young & Rubicam, a shop that was dropped from J&J’s creative roster in the U.S.
J&J vp/advertising George Tyrrell declined to comment on the media situation. He referred calls to a company spokesman who said, “The company has always been pleased with Y&R in (media). But as is customary practice, we will review their performance by the end of the year to see if any changes are in order.”
Sources are not so sure that Y& R is on safe ground, however. “It was my understanding that Y&R was going to lose the media buying business, if not this week, soon,” said one source.
Paul Isacsson, executive vp/director of communication at Y&R, declined to comment.
J&J’s move, which was two years in the making, dramatically alters its agency roster. FCB/Leber Katz Partners/N.Y. has been scratched off the J&J roster as it lost the Clean & Clear skincare business. Y&R lost its creative assignments everywhere but in Latin America.
The client said the realignment represents an effort to “increase the efficiency of advertising expenditures by concentrating accounts for principal product categories within its core agencies–Saatchi & Saatchi, Lintas, McCann and DDB Needham.”
For DDB Needham, it might not be altogether a coincidence that the agency and Bristol-Myers severed their relationship just last month after DDB saw its role diminishing with that client. DDB was able to parlay its small Ortho-Pharmaceutical account, including the Ortho Novum birth control pill, into more work in part by the close attention given that account by executive vp Mary Lou Quinlan. Sources said that DDB/N.Y. president Andy Berlin also had courted top J&J executives even before the Bristol-Myers business left the ad agency.
Neither Quinlan nor Berlin would comment on the matter.
Copyright Adweek L.P. (1993)