Monday Wake-Up Call: A big Nestle-Starbucks deal, a McDonald's ad push and other news

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Welcome to Ad Age’s Wake-Up Call, our daily roundup of advertising, marketing, media and digital news. What people are talking about today: Nestle and Starbucks just inked a deal to form what they’re calling a “global coffee alliance,” and that’s not just corporate hyperbole — it’s a big deal. Nestle will pay Starbucks $7.15 billion upfront in cash for the right to sell Starbucks packaged products in places including supermarkets, Bloomberg News reports. And people will be able to buy Starbucks capsules to use in their Nespresso and Dolce Gusto coffee machines. “With Starbucks, Nescafe and Nespresso, we bring together three iconic brands in the world of coffee,” Nestle Chief Executive Officer Mark Schneider said in a joint statement. The deal doesn’t include ready-to-drink products. Read more on Bloomberg News.

Fresh beef

McDonald’s is launching a big marketing push for its fresh beef, cooked-to-order Quarter Pounders this week, and as Ad Age’s Jessica Wohl writes, “bringing fresh beef patties to nearly all of its U.S. restaurants has been in the works for years.” (That’s fresh beef, as opposed to frozen.) For the ads, McDonald’s tapped the star power of Charles Barkley, Luis Fonsi, John Goodman and Gabrielle Union. The creative, from dedicated Omnicom Group agency We Are Unlimited, features people left speechless as they savor the burgers, with random celebrities doing the talking for them. It’s sort of like Amazon’s Super Bowl spot “Alexa Loses Her Voice,” but it’s about Quarter Pounders instead of smart speakers. Confused? Watch it here.

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