Vegemite cuts ties with JWT after 74 years
The iconic Aussie brand said in a statement it marks the end of one of the longest standing agency partnerships within the FMCG world, which lasted for 74 years.
Headquartered in Melbourne, Thinkerbell, will take over from the incumbent J. Walter Thompson (JWT). It is set to challenge the creative minds behind the Vegemite and Bega brands and help move them forward with a strong and insightful new strategy, that seeks to bring science and creativity together.
Ben Hill, marketing director of Bega Foods, said the recent strength and positive-growth on Vegemite could be attributed largely to the increased exposure the brand has been generating. One driver of this has been the return of the iconic brand to Australian ownership under Bega and the positivity surrounding the return of Vegemite to home soil.
“Through recognising the strength in our Australian heritage and our need to focus on the future to continue positive momentum, we felt the time was right to refresh our creative agency. Thinkerbell – a new cutting-edge Australian agency – represent everything that we want our brands to deliver,” said Hill. “With a new team and new outlook, we are thrilled to be working closely with Thinkerbell to instill the Vegemite and Bega brands further into the Australian psyche.”
The latest decision to change agencies comes off the back of the Bega Cheese acquiring the Mondelez Foods business in 2017 and bringing Vegemite into Australian ownership for the first time in over 90 years. Vegemite said this milestone triggered a desire within the marketing team to re-invigorate the business’ agency roster with a bold and ambitious approach to the brand’s management.
JWT were the creative minds behind the now famous “Happy Little Vegemites” campaign. Vegemite enjoyed a strong and successful relationship with the company that lasted 74 years and produced some of Australia’s favourite moments; connecting the brand to millions of homes and families in Australia and around the world.
“We anticipate a bright future with Thinkerbell and can’t wait to inspire more Australians than ever before,” Hill concluded.
Thinkerbell was founded in July 2017 and is led by Adam Ferrier, Ben Couzens, Margie Reid and Jim Ingram as partners. The creative agency represents a great balance between strategy and creative, and they will now manage the creative execution on the Bega Foods suite of brands including Vegemite and Bega Peanut Butter.
“We feel a great responsibility and are thrilled to be at the helm of the creative execution to drive the future success of brands such as Bega and Vegemite, two of Australia’s most loved and iconic brand,” said Thinkerbell founder Adam Ferrier.
“Our approach and differentiation is that we focus on bringing science and creativity together. We will use this combination to spearhead the development of a new creative platform that will help both Vegemite and Bega Peanut Butter continue to grow into new markets locally and abroad,” added Thinkerbell managing partner Margie Reid.
Vegemite said in a statement while the new partnership is set to propel the iconic brand into the future, the team at Vegemite acknowledge with great pride, the extensive success former agency – JWT – had over their history on the brand.