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Wilkinson Sword challenges Gillette with Quattro launch

LONDON - Wilkinson Sword is challenging Gillette's dominance in the men's shaving sector with the launch of the Quattro, the first four-blade razor, which will be backed by the biggest marketing campaign in the history of Wilkinson Sword.

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The campaign is being created by J Walter Thompson and, while the budget is known to be multimillion, Wilkinson Sword is not disclosing the spend at this stage.

The Quattro will be pushed through advertising, consumer sampling, public relations and viral marketing.

Richard Nall, marketing director of Wilkinson Sword, said: "Quattro is the most important and dynamic launch in Wilkinson Sword's history and sees the brand boldly going where no shaving manufacturer has gone before."

The launch will challenge the dominance of Gillette's triple-blade Mach 3, which is the market leader.

So successful is Gillette's Mach 3 that it is shoplifted more than any other product.

There could, however, be a legal tussle ahead as Gillette claims that the Quattro is infringing its progressive blade geometry and has filed a lawsuit against Energizer, which owns Wilkinson Sword.

However, Wilkinson Sword says that it is not just the number of blades that make the Quattro unique -- it also has a safety mechanism that kicks in if the user presses too hard, to avoid nicks and cuts.

Quattro is due to launch in September, with Wilkinson Sword saying that it has tested well, with 73% of men saying they prefer it to their current razor.

The futuristic black and chrome razor will retail at £6.49, including two replacement blades.

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