Swiss Watchmaker Ebel Contacts Agencies About Global Account

Ebel SA, the Swiss luxury watchmaker, is contacting agencies about the creative portion of its global account, said sources.
“Ebel is looking for an evolution of its advertising campaign, which could be achieved by our agency or a new one,” according to Aldo Magada, worldwide marketing director for Ebel. Magada said as part of the review process, the client is “briefing several agencies around the world.”
Publicis/Bloom here is the worldwide incumbent.
Weak sales in European markets motivated the client to start a search, sources said. Publicis presented new creative work to Ebel a few weeks ago with the understanding that an unsatisfactory presentation could result in an agency review, sources said. The work was accepted, and the shop was asked to make revisions for the European market, sources said.
Publicis won the account two years ago, then estimated to be worth $7-10 million. In the U.S., Ebel spent $3-4 million on advertising last year, according to Competitive Media Reporting. Less than $1 million has been spent on domestic advertising in the first seven months of 1997.
Ebel’s current tagline is: “The architects of time.” The company’s watch lines include the Shanta, Beluga, Sport Classic, 1911, Perpetual Calendar, Le Modulor and Discovery models. Ebel’s main competitors are Baume & Mercier and Concord.
Prior to Publicis/Bloom, the account was handled by several shops, including Opt-X Advertising in West Caldwell, N.J. –with Jennifer Comiteau