NEW YORK Mars Inc., the global candy maker, said it is consolidating its global ad account with Omnicom Group holdings BBDO and TBWA Worldwide by year's end.
The move all but ends the company's longtime relationship with Grey Global Group's Grey Worldwide, which is currently being acquired by WPP Group.
Grey will continue to handle some below-the-line duties such as interactive, direct and sales promotion in various parts of the world, but relinquishes main ad duties on Starburst and Cookies & on Dec. 31, 2004, the company said.
It is unclear how much business BBDO and TBWA will pick up.
BBDO has been a roster shop since 1995, handling Snickers, M&M's, Mars/Milky Way, Sheba and Cesar. TBWA joined the roster in 2002 and handles client brands Skittles, Uncle Ben's, Pedigree and Whiskas.
The McLean, Va.-based client said in a statement that it desired one holding company for its mainstream advertising.
Executives at BBDO and TBWA could not be reached for comment.