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Ogilvy tightens grip on Miller brands

NEW YORK - Ogilvy & Mather Worldwide could be set to pick up the $50m (£32m) advertising account for Miller Genuine Draft, part of the second-largest brewing company in the US.

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The account is currently held by J Walter Thompson in Chicago. Both Ogilvy and JWT are owned by the WPP Group. However, reports say that Ogilvy New York, which already handles Miller Lite, has been asked to work on the account.

It could be the first sign that the account is set to shift completely. Sales for the brand have been disappointing for the last three years, down 8% from 1998 when JWT won the work. This has lead to a personnel change on the account at JWT.

Ogilvy's advertising for the Miller Lite brand has been better received by distributors. However, the brand has slipped from being the third most popular beer to fourth during the time Ogilvy has had the work.

Earlier this month, Miller was taken over by South African Breweries, with SAB changing its name to SABMiller. SAB acquired Miller from Philip Morris.

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