BMW MINI'S $24 MILLION AD ACCOUNT GOES TO BUTLER SHINE

Sausalito, Calif., Agency Beats Out Mother, Strawberry Frog

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NEW YORK (AdAge.com) -- BMW’s Mini USA brand has selected independent Butler, Shine, Stern & Partners, Sausalito, Calif., as its new agency of record, according to executives close to the matter.
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The automaker declined to comment.

All three of the finalists for the $24 million account were independent agencies. The others were Mother and Strawberry Frog, both New York.

The agencies made their presentations earlier this week.

Replaces Crispin
Incumbent Crispin Porter & Bogusky, Miami, had handled Mini since 2001. It resigned the account in September for Volkswagen of America’s $340-million U.S. VW brand account. Crispin, which relaunched Mini in the U.S., assumed VW’s account Dec. 5. The agency followed its former Mini client, Kerri Martin, to VW -- Ms. Martin was recently named director of brand innovation at the automaker.

Hasan & Co., Raleigh. N.C., was Mini’s review consultant.

Mini sold 38,384 cars in the U.S. through November vs. 32,222 for the same period a year ago, according Automotive News. It's not a large volume player in the U.S., nor does it spend as much on media as many of its automotive rivals, but it is a sought after brand in the agency world with a reputation for spawning award-winning creative.

Butler, Shine history
Independent Butler, Shine, Stern & Partners was founded by two former Goodby, Silverstein & Co. creatives 11 years ago. While the shop struggled following the dot-com bust, it used the downturn to purchase a number of ancillary shops, such as SF Interactive. It later added Gargantua Design and Influx, a strategic consulting agency.

Clients include Converse, Sun Microsystems and Lucas Arts. Its interactive division did work for Coke and Sprite. BSSP's recent campaign for Converse was centered on a Web contest where fans submitted short films about their attachment to the shoes.

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