AOL NARROWS $300 MILLION U.S. MEDIA REVIEW TO THREE

Carat, Starcom MediaVest, Initiative Advance

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NEW YORK (AdAge.com) -- Time Warner's America Online has narrowed the agencies competing for its $300 million offline media account to three, a spokeswoman for the company said.

Advancing to the next round of the review

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are: Aegis Group's Carat, New York; Publicis Groupe's Starcom MediaVest, Chicago; and the incumbent, Interpublic Group of Cos.' Initiative Worldwide, New York and Los Angeles.

Publicis' Optimedia; WPP Group's Mediaedge:cia; and Omnicom Group's OMD were cut from the review.

Pile & Co., Boston, is conducting the search for the Dulles, Va.-based Internet giant.

Separately, AOL is also conducting a review for its estimated $55 million to $60 million interactive creative and media account; that search has also been narrowed to three agencies.