Excedrin Put in Review

NEW YORK Bristol-Myers Squibb has launched a review of its Excedrin creative account following Bozell’s resignation of the business, sources said.

The pharmaceutical and health-care products marketer is hearing presentations this week from New York-based roster shops Bates and Gotham for the pain-relief medication, according to sources. It is unclear if other shops are involved. The New York-based company put $25 million in measured media behind the brand for the first nine months of this year, half of what it spent for full year 2001, per CMR.

Bozell in New York, which has handled Excedrin for close to a decade, declined comment. Sources said layoffs are not expected as a result. Calls to Gary Matthews, president of Bristol-Myers’ consumer unit, and Wendy Dixon, chief marketing officer and president of global marketing at the client, were not immediately returned.

The most recent work from Bozell was for Excedrin QuickTabs, the melt-in-your-mouth version of Excedrin analgesic. One execution opens on an uncomfortably silent couple at a restaurant. The woman takes a pill out of her purse, pops it in her mouth and throws her glass of water into her date’s face. “New Excedrin QuickTabs melt in your mouth fast for headache relief, so you can save your water for other things,” says the voice over. The screen goes to a product shot as her date says, “I didn’t know she was your sister.”

Media handled by MIndShare in New York is unaffected.