Nokia Taps JWT

NEW YORK Nokia has hired WPP Group’s JWT for distribution and adaptation chores on its global ad account following a review.

The move comes about a month after Nokia’s selection of independent Wieden + Kennedy as worldwide lead agency on its mobile phones account.

Source estimates of revenue on JWT’s business vary wildly, from about $15 million to more than $30 million. Globally, Nokia spends more than $120 million annually in major measured media.

For the distribution and adaptation work, JWT bested Omnicom Group’s DDB, Interpublic Group’s Lowe and the primary incumbent, WPP’s Grey, which had partnered with sibling Bates Asia, sources said. The shops ran the pitches from their London offices. (Wieden beat JWT and Mother to land lead strategic and creative duties on Nokia mobile phones.)

JWT will now support the Espoo, Finland-based client’s creative agencies in tailoring campaigns for local distribution in 80 markets worldwide. As such, JWT will work across Nokia’s mobile phones, multimedia (NSeries) and enterprise solutions divisions, according to a client representative. Creatively, NSeries continues to be led by an IPG team that includes Lowe and R/GA and enterprise employs WPP shops.

“Working together with JWT will help us to align our marketing efforts. With one global marketing network partner, we believe we will be better positioned to reach our goal of becoming the most loved and admired brand by people in the world,” said Pekka Rantala, Nokia’s senior vice president of marketing for Europe who will become global marketing chief on Jan. 1.

JWT had no immediate comment. But worldwide CEO Bob Jeffrey, in an internal email to staffers, wrote that the hire “ensures that we will be the faster, flatter organization [that] we committed to becoming in 2005. I’m very excited and proud.”

Deborah Huret, a client service director on JWT’s global Diamond Trading Company account in London, will become global business director on Nokia, according to the JWT e-mail. Two other London-based executives, worldwide chief creative officer Craig Davis and global planning director Guy Murphy, also will play leading roles on the business.

“We will partner with Nokia in 95 countries, including China and India, and in the Muslim world, where language [and dialects], beliefs and even phone behavior dictate truly relevant local marketing,” wrote Jeffrey. “This is the beginning of something very fast, very fun and totally future ready. Let’s get moving.”

WPP’s MediaCom handles Nokia’s media chores across all divisions.