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Hotels.com Places Creative Account Into Review

More Bad News for Incumbent Doner

By Published on .

NEW YORK (AdAge.com) -- Hotels.com said it has placed its $68.4 million creative advertising account into review, dealing another potential blow to flailing independent Doner, which currently handles advertising duties for all of the Expedia travel website brands.
After less than a year with Doner, the website's account is in play.
After less than a year with Doner, the website's account is in play.

Until now, the Michigan-based agency's win of the $170 million Expedia work less than a year ago was considered the one positive movement after a series of account losses. While the agency still works for Blockbuster, Serta, HGTV, a regional bank called TNC, and canned-bean purveyors Bush Bros., the shop has watched Six Flags, Sylvan Learning Centers and La-Z-Boy -- a collective representing $150 million in billings -- walk out its doors.

Outback Steakhouse, a media client Doner shares with Havas' MPG, is also in a review. That account is valued at $87 million by TNS Media Intelligence.

Hotels.com, on the other hand, is having a red-letter year so far. In Expedia's second-quarter financial report, the hotel-booking website was cited as one of the two main drivers of growth for the parent company, increasing its number of bookings by 27%. It is also the category leader for hotel/resort travel sites, with 6.6 million visitors in May, compared with No. 2 Marriot, which had 5.3 million visitors that same month.

A Hotels.com spokeswoman confirmed the review, but declined comment otherwise. Doner declined comment for this story.
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