Fallon wins half of Nokia, Wieden+Kennedy may lose the rest

Troubled mobile company Nokia has given its mobile phone business, worth £90m, to Fallon and put its other account, smart devices currently at Wieden+Kennedy, up for review, according to Campaign.

If this is the case it looks rather like the proverbial poisoned chalice, despite the generous budgets (smart devices is about £90m too apparently) because Nokia has taken a ferocious hammering in the mobile market recently although the Finnish company remains the world’s biggest producer.

Its Symbian operating system has been overtaken by Apple iPhone and Google’s Android meaning that it doesn’t really have a presence at all in smartphones.

New boss Stephen Elop, a former Microsoft executive, is betting the ranch on a tie-up with his old company to use new Windows Phone technology to drive a yet-to-appear range of smartphones.

So that’s the first problem for whoever takes on the smart devices account, at the moment there aren’t any.

As for Fallon, for whom the win is timely after a difficult year that saw the departures of three key executives to form new agency 101 with former Cadbury marketing director Phil Rumbol, it seems to be charged with marketing phones that few people want.

Still these things are sent to try the creative wizards of adland. W+K, whose latest effort is ‘Blackpool’ featuring blind person Gary Waite, may breathe a sigh of relief.

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About Stephen Foster

Stephen is a former editor of Marketing Week and London Evening Standard advertising columnist. He wrote City Republic for Brand Republic and is a partner in communications consultancy The Editorial Partnership.


  1. Avatar

    Fallon hasn’t won half of Nokia. And the smartphones business is not up for pitch.

  2. Avatar

    so what’s the story then neil? whats the rfi for?

  3. Avatar

    It’s a ‘market scan’ exercise conducted every couple of years by Nokia’s procurement department to review potential suppliers across all aspects of marketing. No mention in there of the global smartphones business or of any pitch.

    For more info see: http://wklondon.typepad.com/welcome_to_optimism/2011/05/the-truth-behind-that-story-in-campaign-magazine.html

  4. Avatar

    Thank you Neil. We (Pitch) are going to add that info and link to Welcome to Optimism blog.
    Not the best day you ever had then 🙁

    Btw. I love your website Stephen.