It's not been a great few weeks for Cramer-Krasselt/Chicago and its hold on various facets of the Corona and Corona Light business. First came word that Corona importer Crown Imports was moving the Corona Light ad account to Publicis/New York -- a step that, at the very least, suggests C-K's grip all on all things Corona no longer is as solid as it once was.
Now, Crown says it intends to relieve C-K of media buying duties for the flagship Corona Extra, Corona Light and Modelo Especial brands. C-K had been handling media buys for the Corona brands since 1993. A Crown spokesman said the importer wants to find a single media buying agency to handle media chores for all the aforementioned beer brands, as well as the Pacifico brand, for which Creature in Seattle currently does both creative and media buys.
The plan is for Crown to select the new media buying firm by year's end and transition all media buying to that agency early in 2010. That means that Cramer-Krasselt will be left with a lot less of everything related to Corona -- including income -- in about another six months. It's not the best of situations, to say the least. C-K and its aggressive CEO Peter Krivkovich will have to start beating the bushes just a little harder to find some new business to make up for what it will be losing with all the Corona changes.
Of course, it might help if C-K managed to find a new creative leader for the Chicago shop sooner rather than later. We've always been told that clients -- potential and existing -- feel more comfortable when they know who will be overseeing the creative output at agencies where they are investing a lot of marketing money.