LONDON--Heineken UK has selected Publicasity to handle its trade PR, worth an estimated £500K.

The decision follows a competitive review earlier this year, as revealed by the Holmes Report. Scottish firm Smarts previously handled the business, after consolidating it in 2008 following Heineken’s acquisition of brewer Scottish & Newcastle.

In addition to communicating brand activity throughout the year, Publicasity is tasked with delivering category and portfolio messages for Heineken and, in particular, amplifying the company's recently-launched Star Retailer programme - which offers off-trade retailers advice to maximise their sales of beer and cider.

The design component of the account will be handled by Scottish firm 999 Design.

The account remit covers such brands as Heineken, Foster’s, Kronenbourg, Strongbow, Bulmers and John Smith’s. The Scottish & Newcastle deal made Heineken the largest seller of beer in the UK and Europe; in the UK, its market share is more than 25 percent, well ahead of second-placed rival A-B InBev.

“Publicasity demonstrated the creativity, capability and desire to deliver a fully-integrated trade press and customer communications strategy that will motivate our trade partners to sell more beer and cider, more profitably all-year round,” said David Jones, UK press and PR manager at Heineken.

The company recently appointed group veteran Jacco van der Linden as its UK marketing director, after earlier naming former Wine and Spirit Trade Association CEO Jeremy Beadles as corporate relations director.