Incumbent Ackerman McQueen Still in Contention

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NEW YORK ( -- Theme-parks company Six Flags has narrowed the list of agencies vying for its media and creative account to seven, according to executives with knowledge of the situation.

Agencies that will progress to the next stage of the review are Interpublic Group of Cos.' Deutsch, Los Angeles, and Foote, Cone & Belding Worldwide, Chicago; WPP Group's J. Walter Thompson, New York; Publicis Groupe's Fallon, Minneapolis; and independents Doner, Southfield, Mich., and the Richards Group, Dallas. Six Flags' incumbent agency, Ackerman McQueen, Oklahoma City, is defending the account.

Six Flags did not return calls by press time.

Media agencies not set
The review includes media, but the contending agencies' media partners will be determined at a later point in the process, the executives said. Interpublic's Initiative Partners, Los Angeles, part of Initiative Media North America, won the media account last October.

Six Flags, which has headquarters in New York City and Oklahoma City, spent $46 million in measured media in 2002, according to TNS Media Intelligence/CMR. Spending on the account is estimated at $90 million to $100 million, the executives said. In documents filed with the Securities and Exchange Commission, Six Flags reported its annual global advertising expenditures as $108 million.

New York City-based consultancy Roth Associates, which is handling the agency review, could not be reached for comment.

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Kate MacArthur contributed to this story.