Frederic de Wilde

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Frederic de Wilde was appointed President European Union Region at Philip Morris International (PMI) in July 2015.12

Long-Standing Career in the Tobacco Industry

De Wilde joined PMI in 1992 as Brand Manager for Philip Morris Belgium, and has held various leadership positions since, including:

  • Senior Vice President Marketing & Sales (2011)
  • President Philip Morris Japan KK (2008)
  • Managing Director Philip Morris Italia (2005)
  • Managing Director Philip Morris Greece (2003)
  • Sales Director Philip Morris Spain (2000)
  • Marketing Director Philip Morris Spain (1996)

Tobacco Advertising: The ‘Be Marlboro’ Campaign

In June 2012, at Philip Morris International’s Investor Day, de Wilde, made a presentation titled ‘Brand Portfolio and Commercial Approach’ which, amongst other information, gave details about PMI’s future plans for the most widely consumed cigarette brand in the world, their premium brand, Marlboro.3
In his presentation, de Wilde announced that the iconic Marlboro man cowboy advertisement had been replaced by the new Be Marlboro campaign. According to de Wilde, the new campaign promoted the traditional values of Marlboro, ‘freedom, authenticity, confidence and leadership’ , and aimed to appeal to ‘Legal age to 24 year old smokers’.
Health campaigners however criticised the Be Marlboro campaign for ‘actively targeting minors’, and in Germany the campaign was banned in October 2014.4 That same year, PMI was fined US$500,000 in Brazil, because it had been demonstrated that the Be Marlboro campaign was “kids-targeted” and violated Brazil’s ban on tobacco advertising sponsorship and promotion.5
See Be Marlboro: Targeting the World’s Biggest Brand at Youth for more details of this advertising campaign, and Advertising Strategy for more general information on how tobacco companies advertise their products

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  1. Philip Morris International, Board of Directors, undated, accessed October 2017
  2. Philip Morris International, Philip Morris International Inc. (PMI) Announces Senior Management Changes,, 28 September 2017, accessed October 2017
  3. F. de Wilde, Philip Morris International Investor Day – Brand Portfolio and Commercial Approach, 21 June 2012
  4. L. Stampler, Marlboro Says These Ads Definitely Don’t Target Kids, Time, 13 March 2014, accessed October 2017
  5. J. Stewart, Brazil Fines Big Tobacco for Marketing to Kids, Corporate Accountability International, 4 September 2014, accessed October 2017