Fever-Tree poised to appoint Lucky Generals as ad agency

Kanter: joined Fever-Tree from Diageo
Kanter: joined Fever-Tree from Diageo

Tonic-water brand has been looking for new creative direction as it fends off competition from Coca-Cola.

Fever-Tree is set to appoint Lucky Generals as its new creative agency after a competitive pitch that was concluded this month.

Lucky Generals, which is majority-owned by Omnicom, pitched against Interpublic’s MullenLowe London two weeks ago. Fever-Tree called the review towards the end of last year and held chemistry meetings before Christmas.

Campaign understands that a formal appointment has not yet been made, as terms between Fever-Tree and Lucky Generals have not been finalised.

Neither Fever-Tree nor Lucky Generals responded to a request for comment.

Once appointed, Lucky Generals will begin working on an ad campaign. This could run as early as June to coincide with the brand's sponsorship of the Queen's Club tennis tournament in London – a high-profile sporting event broadcast on the BBC as a curtain-raiser for Wimbledon.

Fever-Tree works with Goodstuff Communications on media planning and buying.

The tonic-water brand is looking to step up its advertising, having recently hired Jeremy Kanter, the former top European marketer for Diageo's Guinness, as chief marketing officer. Kanter is leading Fever-Tree’s overall marketing and brand agenda as it works to grow sales across its markets. 

Fever-Tree had endured disappointing Christmas sales in 2019 and Schweppes (owned by Coca-Cola in Europe) grew faster in the 12 months to October 2019, Nielsen data revealed. Schweppes, the traditional brand leader for the mixers category, had revamped its packaging and launched a premium range after being overtaken by Fever-Tree in 2017. 

Meanwhile, Fever-Tree faces further competition from Coca-Cola, which has launched eponymously branded flavoured mixers, as well as smaller providers Fentimans and Britvic. Fever-Tree and Schweppes are, by far, the market leaders. 

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