UNIVERSAL MCCANN WINS RICHEMONT ACCOUNT

London Luxury Goods Marketer's Media Work Worth $50 Million

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NEW YORK (AdAge.com) -- Luxury goods marketer Richemont, London, owner of prestige brands ranging from Cartier and Van Cleef & Arpels to Mont Blanc, has awarded its estimated $50 million media buying and planning account to Interpublic Group of Cos.' Universal McCann, according to executives with knowledge of the account.

The account, which is for North America plus Latin America/Caribbean, previously was handled by Plaza, Richemont's in-house marketing agency, which will continue to work on the co-op business with Universal McCann.

Mediaedge:CIA, OMD in review
Richemont, the second largest marketer of luxury goods behind LVMH, uses WPP Group's Mediaedge:CIA for its European media business and Omnicom Group's OMD in Asia. Those shops participated in the review against Universal McCann.

Interpublic's Avrett Free Ginsburg participated in the review with Universal McCann. The advertising agency handles creative for Van Cleef & Arpels, and will keep the brand's media planning. Avrett Free will also work on media planning for Mont Blanc.

Executives at Avrett Free and Universal McCann refused to comment on the review. Richemont executives did not return calls for comment.

Dedicated media group
Universal McCann is creating a separate media group dedicated to service Richemont. It will be led by Brett Stewart, 42, who was recently promoted to senior vice president and director of the strategic print unit at Universal McCann, a new, national position. Mr. Stewart was the managing director of Universal McCann's San Francisco office for two years. He is relocating to New York to handle both the print business and the Richemont account. Mr. Stewart will report to Sean Cunningham, executive vice president and managing director of Universal McCann New York.

Mr. Stewart, a native of Melbourne, Australia, joined Universal McCann, San Francisco, in 2000.

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