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[new york] Wenner Media, publisher of UsWeekly, is among those weighing a bid for Primedia's Seventeen, the iconic teen brand that's been up for sale. Hachette Filipacchi Media US, Hearst Magazines and marketer/cataloger Alloy are also still looking, though some insiders say the two magazine companies' interest is lackluster. Time Inc., Advance Publications, Gruner & Jahr USA Publishing, American Media and Meredith Corp. passed on the title, say executives. Bids are due this week. Seventeen posted a 5.9% ad page decline in the first quarter of this year, while its top competitors posted double-digit page gains, and single-copy sales fell 24.1% in the last half of 2002. See QwikFIND aao59o

Brit shop hired for PR push by America Online

[new york] AOL Time Warner's America Online named London-based Freud Communications to handle a broad range of consumer public relations duties in the U.S. and overseas. A senior AOL executive said consumer PR is now a priority for the brand. Freud Communications founder Matthew Freud previously worked for America Online CEO Jonathan Miller in London before Mr. Miller joined AOL.

Sears `big-box' stores named `Sears Grand'

[hoffman estates, ill.] Sears, Roebuck & Co.'s new concept, off-mall big-box type store will be named Sears Grand, a spokeswoman said. The first of five planned test stores is under construction in West Jordan, Utah. Marketing plans for the test are under development.

Microsoft opens launch for a global sub-brand

[redmond, wash.] Microsoft Corp. this week launches a global print, online, direct and events campaign for its new Microsoft Business Solutions sub-brand for small businesses and mid-size corporations. Interpublic Group of Cos.' McCann-Erickson Worldwide, San Francisco, handles. Creative uses a question mark as a visual device with print ad headlines such as "Questions are everywhere. Insight is not." Spending was not disclosed. The campaign will run in the U.S., Canada, Europe and Australia.

Midas shops for agency; six to eight in review

[itasca, ill.] Midas said it is reviewing six to eight agencies for its creative assignment, now at Cliff Freeman & Partners, New York. Midas spent $40.6 million in measured media in 2002, said Taylor Nelson Sofres' CMR. The agencies were not disclosed. Cliff Freeman did not return calls. A decision is expected by summer. The review is handled in-house.

Simply Orange rolls national in May

[atlanta] Coca-Cola Co.'s Minute Maid Co. unit will roll national with its premium Simply Orange not-from-concentrate orange juice next month supported by a TV campaign. Spending was not disclosed. Doner, Southfield, Mich., handles. The premium juice, billed as "the fresh-squeezed taste experience" was launched in 2001 in the Northeast and expanded last year to the Southeast.

$50 mil AOL/Germany review draws five shops

[hamburg, germany] Time Warner's America Online is reviewing its $50 million German account. Pitching are: the incumbent, Grey Global Group's Grey Worldwide, Hamburg; Omnicom Group's BBDO Worldwide, Duesseldorf; independent Jung von Matt, Hamburg; Scholz & Friends, Hamburg, backed by Cordiant Communications Group; and Interpublic Group of Cos.' FCB Wilkens, Hamburg.

Novartis breaks first ads from Deutsch on Lamisil

[east hanover, n.j.] Novartis Pharm-aceutical Corp. breaks an integrated campaign today for anti-fungal Lamisil Tablets that introduces an animated character, "Digger the Dermatophyte." Spending was not disclosed. TV ads are to appear on CBS and Fox and the print schedule includes USA Today plus Health and Time magazines. Novartis assigned the $25 million account to Interpublic's Deutsch, New York, last October.

Capital One taps McCann to handle creative work

[mclean, va.] Capital One Financial Corp. hired Interpublic's McCann-Erickson Worldwide, New York and London, to handle its creative assignment. Media remains with Publicis Groupe's MediaVest USA. Capital One spent $195.4 million in measured media in the U.S. in 2002, according to Taylor Nelson Sofres' CMR. Publicis' Kaplan Thaler Group, New York, had handled Capital One on an interim basis following the closure last year of Publicis' D'Arcy Masius Benton & Bowles, New York. Kaplan Thaler, with Publicis Worldwide, London, pitched to keep the business. Others in the review: Omnicom Group's Element 79, Chicago, with Abbot Mead Vickers BBDO, London; and independent Faulds Advertising, London, pitching alone. Bob Wolf/TPG, Los Angeles, handled the review.

FYI . . .

Washington Mutual is reviewing agencies for its Hispanic market assignment, currently at La Agencia de Orci, Los Angeles, executives familiar with the situation said. Washington Mutual declined to comment. La Agencia de Orci did not return calls. Spending was not disclosed. ... Masterfoods USA this week launches Pop'ables, bite-sized versions of its popular candy bars, with an estimated $15 million TV and print campaign from Omnicom's BBDO Worldwide, New York. ... Five agencies were named for the next phase of DuPont & Co. `s account review following creative presentations last week: Interpublics's Foote, Cone & Belding Worldwide and McCann-Erickson Worldwide; WPP's Ogilvy & Mather Worldwide and Y&R Advertising; and Publicis' Saatchi & Saatchi. Independent Doner, Southfield, Mich., and Publicis' Fallon Worldwide are no longer in the review. See QwikFIND aao59b... Tyco International narrowed its estimated $30 million advertising review to four shops: Interpublic's Hill, Holliday, Connors, Cosmopulos; WPP's Young & Rubicam; and two Omnicom agencies, DDB Worldwide and TBWA/Chiat/Day. ... Coca-Cola Co. named Publicis' Frankel, Chicago, to develop 2004 promotions ideas across all age groups for Coca-Cola Classic and Sprite. Other Coke promotion agencies include WPP Group's Ben Marketing and Interpublic's Momentum. ... Publishers Information Bureau said consumer magazine ad pages rose 5.3% in the first quarter compared to the year-ago period. ... Interpublic's Suissa Miller Advertising, Los Angeles, said Bruce Miller, 50, the agency's president, is slated to work on undisclosed holding company assignments. Specifics of his duties have yet to be finalized, Mr. Miller and Interpublic said. Hunter Phillips, 45, formerly with Rubin Postaer & Associates, Santa Monica, Calif., will assume some of Mr. Miller's duties at Suissa Miller.

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