MEDIAVEST GETS DIRECTV'S $137 MILLION MEDIA-BUYING ACCOUNT

Move Consolidates All Media Work in Same Shop

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NEW YORK (AdAge.com) -- Publicis Groupe's MediaVest has been awarded DirecTV's $137 million media-buying business, according to executives with knowledge of the move.

The account was handled previously by MediaVest sibling GM Mediaworks. MediaVest already handled media planning for DirecTV; the account shift consolidates the media business at one shop.

Interpublic Group of Cos.' Deutsch, New York, has the creative portion of the account, which was not affected by the move.

News Corp. acquisition
Last month, News Corp. reached an agreement to acquire General Motor Corp.'s stake in the El Segundo, Calif.-based satellite carrier. Since GM Mediaworks only handles media business for GM, the DirecTV account was moved over to MediaVest; the timing was to coincide with the start of TV prime-time upfront ad selling negotiations.

News Corp. Chairman-CEO Rupert Murdoch is expected to put significant resources behind an already-aggressive marketing push for satellite services vs. cable.

Executives at MediaVest and GM Mediaworks referred calls to DirecTV. A spokeswoman at DirecTV did not return phone calls at press time.

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