Wieden Makes It On To EA Roster

Wieden + Kennedy has so coveted Electronics Arts’ $80 million account that its New York office resigned Sega in December in anticipation of getting a shot at the business, according to sources. Now the agency has its chance.

EA, creator of best-selling videogames such as Madden NFL Football, last week gave Wieden $10 million worth of work, including responsibility for its Need for Speed and Tiger Woods PGA Tour games. EA chose Wieden because the shop is “global in scope,” said Carolyn Feinstein, vp of marketing and communications. “We’re always looking not just at a piece of creative but at a true campaign, from street teams to guerrilla marketing. We’ve always been admirers of Wieden, especially their work on Nike and ESPN.”

The reassignment from EA’s 10-year-plus creative and planning shop, See in San Francisco, to Wieden in Portland, Ore., does not signal dissatisfaction with See, Feinstein said. “See remains our agency of record,” she said. “But we decided to give Wieden one sports and one game franchise with a global opportunity.” (Palisades Media Group, Santa Monica, Calif., handles buying for EA.)

Wieden’s last work for Sega’s ESPN sports games broke this month. The ongoing effort stars Tracy Morgan as an overconfident gamer who challenges pros to real-life sports showdowns.

EA in Redwood City, Calif., has worldwide sales of $2.5 billion, ahead of Take-Two ($1 billion) and Activision ($864 million), according to Hoover’s Online.