BMW NARROWS REVIEW FOR WESTERN REGION TO 5

Finalist to Be Briefed on Creative Assignment

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SAN FRANCISCO (AdAge.com) -- BMW of North America has narrowed the list of finalists for its $30 million Western regional ad account from nine to five shops.

The remaining contenders, all California

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based, are: independents Heil-Brice Advertising, Newport Beach, and Secret Weapon Marketing, Santa Monica; Grey Global Group's Grey Worldwide, Los Angeles; Publicis Groupe's Publicis & Hal Riney, San Francisco; and the 11-year incumbent, Mendelsohn/Zien, Los Angeles, minority-owned by Hakuhodo.

Decision exepcted next month
The finalists will be briefed on a creative assignment with a decision in the review expected next month.

Select Resources International, West Hollywood, Calif., is conducting the review.

Eliminated from contention were independents Butler, Shine, Stern & Partners, Sausalito; Los Angeles-based Concept Farm and WongDoody; and VitroRobertson, San Diego.

Sales up from 2002
The BMW Group, which consists of a combination of BMW and Mini brands, had record October sales of 22,685 vehicles, up 15% from 2002. Year to date, sales are up 10% from 2002 to 226,868, the company reported.

Nevertheless, BMW's Western region wants to drum up more drivers to take test drives, according to information released at the time the review was announced.

Publicis' Fallon, Minneapolis, handles BMW's national advertising.

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