CRISPIN PORTER NOT INVITED TO PITCH $160 MILLION BMW ACCOUNT

Automaker Decides to Keep BMW and Mini Brand Agencies Separate

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SAN FRANSISCO (AdAge.com) -- Miami hot shop Crispin Porter & Bogusky, whose advertising launched the BMW Mini Cooper and helped grow the car brand -- not to mention the agency's own reputation as a creative powerhouse -- has not been invited to pitch the larger $160 million BMW of North America ad account.
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A BMW spokeswoman said the automaker wanted to keep the two brands separate. BMW spent $22 million in measured media on the Mini last year, and $4 million in the first quarter, according to TNS Media Intelligence.

A spokeswoman for the agency had no comment.

MDC Partners
Crispin Porter is part of MDC Partners, and a number of shops in the MDC family are believed to be in the fray. In a six-month earnings call today, MDC's chairman-CEO, Miles Nadal, said "multiple MDC agencies" are participating in the BMW pitch.

MDC has stakes several highly regarded creative agencies such as Crispin Porter, Cliff Freeman & Partners, Kirshenbaum Bond & Partners and Margeotes Fertitta Powell; the latter two are believed to have been invited to pitch the BMW account.

BMW earlier this week contacted about a dozen agencies in the initial stage of its review. Incumbent Fallon, Minneapolis, part of Publicis Groupe, is not participating. Fallon had the account for 10 years and was responsible for the groundbreaking BMW Films campaign.

Select Resources International, Santa Monica, Calif., is the consultant.

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Lisa Sanders contributed to this report.

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