Brown-Forman Corporation announced that DDB Unlimited will be the new lead strategic and creative agency for Finlandia Vodka, with Haygarth as their partner to handle shopper and retail marketing. This competitive pitch process was managed by Creativebrief.
Alexander Gorelin, Global Brand Director for Finlandia Vodka, said of the news: “We’re delighted to have appointed DDB Unlimited. We have a rich brand story at the heart of Finlandia and are confident we have found the right agency partner to tell it in a powerful, meaningful and distinctive way. DDB Unlimited displayed a great understanding of what Finlandia is about now and its heritage, and we can’t wait to start working together.”
Esther te Pas, Managing Director at DDB Unlimited said: “We’re thrilled to welcome Finlandia Vodka on board. We’re honored to use our creative and strategic thinking to help one of the world’s iconic brands refine and maintain its relevance in a world that is, quite literally, changing faster than ever before.”
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With the COVID-19 outbreak and lockdown coming into effect shortly after the review began earlier this year, the brand team, alongside Creativebrief, ran the process entirely remotely.
“Running a pitch virtually was quite unusual for us and the participants, yet we’ve experienced a great level of involvement and chemistry with the agencies,” commented Daria Gladysheva, Global Brand Manager for Finlandia Vodka. “With the Brown-Forman team and stakeholders split across Amsterdam, Louisville and Helsinki, the pitching agencies spread throughout Europe, and Creativebrief based in London, the virtual process added agility and allowed to save significant time on travel.”
Joris Kang’eri, Creative Director at DDB Unlimited: “The interpersonal chemistry in a pitch is always important, but in this case it was critical, as it helped overcome the limitations that physical distance and a lack of shared space presented. For the teams from Finlandia, Haygarth and ourselves being able to naturally play off each other during brainstorms, creative sessions and reviews has set an excellent foundation for a fruitful partnership.”
Finlandia Vodka previously worked with Wieden + Kennedy London.