A Warburtons TV ad campaign starring Hollywood legend Robert De Niro was such a success that bosses at the Bolton bakery firm have been able to pay themselves £15 million in dividends.
The double-Oscar winning actor featured in the 120 second advert in May 2019, and is now being credited with helping the family business get back on its feet with profits of £11.3 million in the year to last September, reversing a £6.6 million loss the year before.
The advert promoted the firm’s bagels, and was filmed at the company HQ in Bolton. De Niro starred in the ad alongside firm chairman Jonathan Warburton, who will celebrate 20 years as chairman in 2021. Warburton said that it was “great to have De Niro’s seal of approval” for the company’s bagels, given that “as an iconic New Yorker, he knows his way around a bagel”.
De Niro commented that it had been a “pleasure” to film this advert for Warburtons and that he “hoped everyone enjoys the final cut”.
Warburtons said that, despite a drop in bread sales over the past few years, sales of bagels, teacakes and other lines were continuing to grow. The brand has held the position of most popular bread in the UK since 2008, ahead of rivals Kingsmill and Hovis.
Warburtons has a history of working with celebrities, with Sylvester Stallone and Peter Kay previosuly involved in its brand campaigns. The company was founded in Bolton in 1876 and it employs 4,500 people at 12 sites.