DDB Adds Lipton Overseas

NEW YORK Unilever, two years after shifting U.S. and pan-European creative duties on its Lipton teas to DDB from JWT, has stripped the latter of its remaining international portion of the business, thereby consolidating all Lipton tea globally at DDB.

At the same time, Unilever has hired DDB sister shop Tribal DDB to handle global interactive duties on Lipton teas, a new assignment, DDB confirmed. Previously, that work was handled by various shops on a project basis.

The U.S. shift, which included Lipton Brisk and Lipton teas, occurred in September 2004. The latest shift covers creative duties on the brand in Latin America, the Middle East, Africa and the Asia-Pacific region, a Unilever representative confirmed.

Estimated billings on those pieces of business are $25 million. Unilever spent about $56 million in U.S. major measured media last year on Lipton teas, according to Nielsen Monitor-Plus.

DDB, which also handles creative duties on Lipton Side Dishes and Knorr, in 2005 developed a new positioning for Lipton in the U.S. that focused on the health benefits of tea. The tagline to that effort is “Lipton tea can do that.”

“The strong results generated by ‘Lipton tea can do that’ suggested it was time to unite the fast-growing brand under a single, global strategy with a full communications partner,” said Didier Dallemagne, svp of global beverages at Unilever, in a statement. “DDB’s strategic and co-creative approach to our business issues has been a good fit with our brand vision for Lipton Tea.”

DDB worldwide CEO Chuck Brymer said, “It’s always great to win business and even more so when it’s an acknowledgement of ongoing work for a client’s brand.”

JWT, which declined comment, continues to handle a half-dozen other Unilever brands, including Sunsilk, Caress and Lever 2000.