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Coca-Cola: “Armageddon’s Coming”, Insider Predicts

News, 28 August 2001


The Coca-Cola insider (quoted by Adweek) referred not to the last battle between good and evil before the Day of Judgement but to matters of a far more cataclysmic nature – the expected merger of certain internal marketing operations and functions as Coke prepares for a brand realignment among its agencies.

High level changes are on the Tarot. According to a source quoted by Adweek.com: “Armageddon's coming. Coke is days or weeks from a new shake-up.” This will probably include a major brand revamp for Sprite, concerning which at least three roster shops have been asked to submit their ideas. Currently, the $85 million Sprite account is in the hands of Lowe Lintas & Partners.

Coca-Cola’s major advertising and marketing partner Interpublic Group has been involved in the discussions. High on their joint agenda has been the account conflicts posed by Gatorade, Tropicana and Aquafina – all handled by Interpublic’s Foote Cone & Belding network, recently ingested as part of its takeover of True North Communications.

The issue became white hot two weeks ago when Coke relaunched its Powerade sports drink in a campaign via Wieden + Kennedy. Whispered one anonymous informant: “Coke looks like a betrayed husband right now.” According to another: “It is inconceivable that Coke would turn a blind eye to an IPG shop having Gatorade."

Watch this space!

News source: AdWeek.com