Oscar Mayer Moves to Ogilvy

CHICAGO Kraft Foods has tapped WPP Group’s Ogilvy & Mather here, a roster shop, to handle creative duties on its nearly $60 million Oscar Mayer account, previously at sister agency JWT in Chicago.

Ogilvy prevailed in a review that included DDB here, an Omnicom agency, and independent mcgarrybowen in New York, according to a Northfield, Ill., company representative. (Both are also Kraft roster shops.)

“Ogvily showed terrific insight into how today’s consumers view our categories,” said Tim Cofer, general manager of Oscar Mayer, in a statement.” They transformed that consumer perspective into an ownable campaign for Oscar Mayer which helped solidify our choice.”

The shift aligns the brand’s advertising with its promotional assignments, which are currently handled by OgilvyAction. Ogilvy works on various Kraft brands out of its New York office, though this is the first assignment for the Chicago outpost.

The Oscar Mayer brand was the largest piece of business moved out of JWT earlier this year. The client spent nearly $100 million on the brand last year, according to Nielsen Monitor-Plus. That spending is believed to include the $40 million Lunchables account, which moved to Interpublic Group’s DraftFCB earlier this year.

Kraft’s shift of nearly $200 million of business out of its longtime agency resulted in layoffs and a management shakeup at JWT. Most of the business has been awarded to new agencies—Havas’ Euro RSCG won the Nabisco crackers business, and independent Nitro won Singles processed cheese. The only brand remaining to be assigned is Grey Poupon.

Publicis Groupe’s MediaVest handles media chores on all of the brands. Those duties are not in play.