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Beck's Creative Goes Into Play

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CHICAGO InBev is reviewing global creative duties on its Beck's beer brand, currently handled by Leo Burnett, the agency has confirmed. Estimated billings are $40-50 million.

"We're proud of our strong, business-building work on Beck's behalf and will aggressively defend the global assignment," the Chicago-based agency said in a statement.

A Burnett representative added that the assignment involves the development of a global ad strategy that could be adapted for local markets.

Burnett, owned by Publicis Groupe, has advertised Beck's since 2002. The agency handles the brand in the U.S., U.K., Italy and other markets.

The client is running the review out of its Belgium operations; company representatives did not immediately return calls.

The other contenders could not be immediately identified, but sources said they include other InBev roster agencies. Among the shops on that roster are Publicis Groupe-backed Bartle Bogle Hegarty in London, which handles Boddington's; Interpublic Group's McCann Erickson in New York, which works on the Bass brand, and Lowe in London, which advertises Stella Artois; as well as independent agency mcgarrybowen in New York, which works on Brahma Beer.

Though global spending could not be determined, InBev typically spends $40-50 million in global measured media to support its individual brands, per sources.