BARCELONA AUTO ACCOUNT MOVES FROM BATES TO GREY

Advertising Work for VW's Seat Is Valued at About $80 Million

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BARCELONA (AdAge.com) -- As anticipated, Volkswagen's Seat unit is moving its estimated $80 million international advertising account from Bates Worldwide's Barcelona office to Grey Global Group's Grey Worldwide, Barcelona, according to the car company.

The agency switch was widely expected after

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WPP Group acquired Bates parent Cordiant Communications Group in August.

CEOs flew to Barcelona
Earlier in the year as they battled for the Spanish automaker's account, WPP CEO Martin Sorrell and Grey's Chairman-CEO Ed Meyer flew to Seat headquarters in Barcelona to woo the automaker.

WPP was handicapped in the competition by being the global supplier to Ford Motor Co. Grey, on the other hand, has been seeking a new international car account since losing the European account for Skoda, also owned by VW, in 2002.

Bates' Seat team in Barcelona is moving to Grey, including both creative directors, Roland Vanoni and Arndt Dallmann, and an account director, Carsten Greiner, the company said.

Insurance giant also moves
Separately, German insurance giant Allianz is moving its $45 million account for the German market from Bates, Barcelona, to Grey, Dusseldorf. Allianz' international account remains at Omnicom Group's BBDO Worldwide, Dusseldorf.

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