The California Lottery Commission will meet Aug. 16 to vote on the contract award to FCB, the lottery said in a statement.
This is the second time this year the lottery has completed a review for the account.
First win contested
In early January, Omnicom Group's DDB Worldwide, Los Angeles, was declared the "apparent winner" of the first pitch. But incumbent Grey Global Group's Grey Worldwide, Los Angeles, protested, citing DDB did not disclose it would buy media from Omnicom sibling OMD. But Grey apparently had disclosure problems of its own, so the lottery decided to call for a second pitch for the business in March.
At the same time, the
Jim Hasegawa, director of marketing, in a statement praised Grey for the work done during its five years as agency for the lottery, with annual sales increased by a total of $800 million over that time, he said. However, Mr. Hasegawa praised FCB for having "demonstrated excellent strategic and creative talents." In addition to the five years covered by the contract, there is an option to extend for one additional year.
Agencies failing to win the pitch will be briefed tomorrow on their scores, which included ratings for media buying. One executive involved in the process said media buying expenses were so crucial to the pitch's outcome that "Anyone, if they chose to, could buy the business."
Original finalists for the second review included Omnicom's TBWA/Chiat/Day, Playa del Rey, Calif. When that office withdrew from the competition, Interpublic's McCann-Erickson Worldwide was added to complete the field.
DDB was hoping to become a three-time winner of the lottery jackpot. DDB's New York office currently handles the New York state lottery and its Chicago office recently won the Illinois state lottery as well.
Big boost for FCB
The win is a big boost for FCB's San Francisco office, hit by the loss of the $400 million AT&T Wireless account a year ago. The shop, however, continues with Yum Brands' Taco Bell account, which it shares with FCB Southern California, Irvine. Other major accounts include Levi Strauss & Co.'s Dockers and Slates brands.
It also is the third major piece of business to be added to the hard hit San Francisco advertising community. Earlier this year, Omnicom's Goodby, Silverstein & Partners picked up the $300 million General Motors' Corp. Saturn Corp. account from Publicis Groupe's Publicis & Hal Riney. The win prevented the Saturn account from leaving the city.
Most recently, the San Francisco office of London-based shop Attik won the youth-branding business for Toyota Motor Corp.'s new Scion brand.
Competition for the $400 million a year the state awards to advertising and public relations agencies has always been spirited, but with the ad business in a slump, competition over state contracts has increased.