cuts 12 employees
[san francisco] Citing dot-com losses and the weakening economy, Omnicom Group's TBWA/Chiat/Day, San Francisco, has cut 12 employees from its 135- employee staff. The office created the poster child of dot-com icons, the sock puppet of defunct Pets.com.
Knauss, Beam named top execs at Coke-P&G unit
[atlanta and cincinnati] Coca-Cola Co. and Procter & Gamble Co. named Donald Knauss and Michael Bearn as top executives for the yet-to-be-named juice and snack company, according to internal memos. Mr. Knauss, 50, currently president-CEO of the Minute Maid Co., will become president of juice and snacks for North America. Mr. Beam, 49, currently VP-finance for P&G's food and beverage global business unit, will become chief financial officer. Both will maintain their current positions and report to the new company's previously named CEO, Don Short, while awaiting regulatory approval.
Member agencies buy out Worldwide Partners
[denver, colo.] The 81 independent agencies that are members of the Worldwide Partners network collectively bought Worldwide Partners for undisclosed terms. Member agencies are located in 41 countries and together employed 5,200 people and billed $4.2 billion in 2000. Clients using the network include Credit Suisse First Boston, The Eastman Chemical Company and Dyneon. The organization was formed in 1938 as the American Advertising Agency Network when five U.S. local agencies agreed to serve as one another's branch offices. U.S. members include: Kirshenbaum Bond & Partners, New York and San Francisco; Archer/Malmo, Memphis, Tenn.; Grant/Jacoby, Chicago; Mintz & Hoke, Avon, Conn.; and Harris Drury Cohen, Ft. Lauderdale, Fla.
Philip Morris moves ahead on Kraft IPO
[new york] Philip Morris Cos. filed a statement last week with the Securities and Exchange Commission to spin off part of its Kraft Foods subsidiary in an initial public offering. Philip Morris filed a registration statement for 1.18 billion shares of class B stock but did not price the shares. When Philip Morris announced plans to acquire Nabisco Holdings Co. last June, it said it planned to sell 10% to 15% of the combined operations and use the proceeds to pay off part of the debt from the acquisition.
Chrysler readies new image campaign
[auburn hills, mich.] Chrysler Group is readying a new ad campaign for its Chrysler brand under the theme "the art of engineering," to try to improve its vehicle quality image, Jim Schroer, exec VP-sales and marketing told Automotive News. The ad theme won't necessarily be the tag line. Omnicom Group's Pentamark Worldwide, Troy, Mich., handles. Separately, Automotive News said General Motors Corp. will shift ad funds from national magazines to regional ads. GM dropped Conde Nast from its 2001 buys two weeks ago (Ad Age March 12).
Swissair, Sabena account up for review
[melville, n.y.] Airline marketing partners SAirGroup's Swissair and Belgian carrier Sabena have launched a review for their joint $3 million account. The four-year incumbent Paradigm Communications, Tampa, Fla., has been invited to participate; a decision is expected by May 15. Ulrich Wohn, Swissair/Sabena's general manager-marketing for North and South America, told Ad Age he's looking for "a good tactical agency that understands our limitations in terms of spending and can help us reach our target audience."
Bounty prepares to roll Era Max
[cincinnati] Procter & Gamble Co. will roll out Era Max, a revamped version of its Era liquid detergent with improved stain fighting power, in May, backed in part by sponsorship of Women's United Soccer Association, which begins its season in April. Era, as official laundry detergent of the WUSA, joins Gillette's Venus and Soft & Dri brands as sponsors of the new league, with matches airing on the TNT and CNN/SI cable networks. Havas Advertising's Jordan McGrath Case & Partners Euro RSCG, New York, handles Era.
IBM launches campaign for `middleware'
[armonk, n.y.] IBM Corp. today launches a $110 million ad campaign featuring visitors from a parallel universe to support its four "middleware" software products: DB2, Lotus, Tivoli and WebSphere. The campaign, created by WPP Group's Ogilvy & Mather Worldwide, New York, will run throughout 2001 in the U.S., Canada, Germany, France, Italy, Britain, Japan and Australia. In addition to print, broadcast, Internet and outdoor ad executions, IBM plans to support the campaign with direct and event marketing.
Procter & Gamble Co. is moving its Bounty paper towels account outside the U.S. from Bcom3 Group's Leo Burnett Worldwide into Havas Advertising's Arnold Worldwide Partners effective July 1. ... Verizon Communications canceled the regional review for its $40 million Wireless Northwest account. The move is part of a larger consolidation plan which will leave Verizon with only four regions nationwide instead of seven ... Initiative Media North America is losing Michael Lotito, 40, president and COO, to a new venture startup at the media agency's parent Interpublic Group of Cos. Mr. Lotito declined to disclose the nature of the new company. ... National TV spot business has seen overall ad revenue drop by 20% in the first quarter. ... Omnicom's BBDO Worldwide, Chicago tapped Mark Pfeifer, 43, as senior VP-account director for the Bayer Consumer Care brands from Havas Advertising's Euro RSCG Tatham, Chicago. ... Pagano Schenck & Kay is relocating to New York, where it will reside with sibling agency EPB Communications. President Beau Fraser said the move came because there is more business in New York than Boston. ... DoubleClick is closing its media operations in Australia. It will service Australian advertisers and publishers from Hong Kong. ... Burger King Corp. today launches its first meal promotion under its new "The Whopper Says" branding effort. ... Danone Group has consolidated the international advertising account for Danone Activ and Danone Taillefine mineral waters with Omnicom Group's DDB Worldwide, Paris.