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Initiative Media to Handle Media

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SAN FRANCISCO ( -- ConocoPhillips, Houston, has awarded its consolidated advertising account to Interpublic Group of Cos.' Dailey & Associates, West Hollywood, Calif., executives involved in the decision said.

Billings on the account for the marketer's three retail gas station brands -- Phillips, 76 and Conoco -- were undisclosed but were anticipated to exceed $20 million.

Declined comment
ConocoPhillips, Houston, declined comment.

Interpublic's Initiative Media

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will handle media billings. Other agencies in the pitch were Conoco's retail shop Fogarty Klein Monroe, Houston, and Interpublic's Campbell-Ewald, Warren, Mich. An executive told the review doesn't impact Campbell-Ewald's status as ConocoPhillips corporate agency.

"It's not often an ad agency can survive one merger, let along two," said Brian Morris, president of Dailey. Dailey originally worked with Tosco, whaich was later acquired by Phillips. Dailey had handled Phillips retail advertising.

Earnings loss
ConocoPhillips, which merged last fall, will annouce its fourth-quarter and full-year results Jan. 29. In the third quarter, the oil giant reported revenue of $15.7 billion vs. $6 billion a year ago. But, with special items, it reported a loss of $116 million vs. net income of $364 million for the third quarter of 2001.

A recent release on the marketer's Web site said the company's debt balance at the end of the fourth quarter is expected to be approximately $19.8 billion. The release also says ConocoPhillips "will dispose of a substantial portion of its company-owned retail sites and exit certain geographic markets" as part of its "rationalization plan.

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