Northlich Wins Velamints Account

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Amurol Confections Co., a subsidiary of Wm. Wrigley Jr. Co., named Northlich, Cincinnati, its agency of record for its Velamints breath mints brand.


There was no competition for the business, whose budget is still under negotiation.


Northlich executives remained in touch with A.G. Atwater and Bruce Thompson, CEO and vice president of marketing, respectively, of Amurol. Atwater formerly worked at Procter & Gamble Co., which is also a Northlich client.


The account award follows Amurol's recent purchase of Velamints from Ragold Inc., Chicago. Ragold is the local affiliate of German confectionery products marketer Ragolds Suesswaren GmbH.


The Velamints line includes Velamints Chocolate Mints, Velamints Peppermints, Velamints Wintergreen and Intense Velamints Sticks in Peppermint. The products are packed in bags or tins.


"We have to come up with a whole new strategic positioning," said Susan Jones, executive vice president and director of client services at Northlich. "It's really a relaunch for this brand in this country."


The agency last year billed $150 million from clients such as Procter & Gamble, Linens 'n Things, Star-Kist, Speedo, Ashland Inc., Whirlpool and Harris Broadcast Communications.


Introduced by Ragold in the United States in 1977, Velamints is credited by some with creating the domestic sugar-free breath mints category.


Tactics under consideration for Velamints include television advertising, interactive advertising, direct mail and street-corner sampling. The campaign is slated to break next year.


"I think we'll do some segmentation type of work," Jones said. "I think we're trying to take a look at the different users and understand what drives them or motivates them to purchase Velamints."


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