NEW YORK, Oct. 20 (UPI) -- U.S. insurance giant MetLife announced Thursday it is dropping Snoopy and the Peanuts gang from its advertising and marketing campaigns, ending a three-decade relationship.
"We brought in Snoopy over 30 years ago to make our company more friendly and approachable during a time when insurance companies were seen as cold and distant. Snoopy helped drive our business and served an important role at the time," Esther Lee, MetLife's global chief marketing officer, said. "We have great respect for these iconic characters. However, as we focus on our future, it's important that we associate our brand directly with the work we do and the partnership we have with our customers."
The move comes as the company plans to spin off much of its U.S. life-insurance business in early 2017, focusing on U.S. corporate clients for life, dental and other plans.
The company is also changing its tag line from "MetLife. I can do this" to "MetLife: Navigating life together" and will be phasing out use of blimps over major U.S. sporting events.