The Week

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The icons of advertising, both real and imaginary, will be part of the American Association of Advertising Agencies' Advertising Week event. Ken Kaess, chairman of the 4A's, said at a press conference and the Museum of Television and Radio in New York last week, "It is important to celebrate the creativity of advertising for the role it plays in American business and in New York City." The event will be part festival and part conference, and will include participation by ad icons such as Tony the Tiger and the Jolly Green Giant and the unveiling an advertising "walk of fame" along Madison Avenue, the traditional home of the ad industry. Among the exhibits running alongside the week of events will be America's favorite advertising-decided by an online vote-and a history of the Ad Council's work. The organizing committee is also brainstorming a concert by former jingle writer Barry Manilow. Advertising Week, to be held next September, has attracted a number of media sponsors, including Yahoo!, The New York Times, USA Today and Advertising Age. AdAge.com QwikFIND aap22j

Champion says yes to Gerbig, Snell

Keycorp's Champion Mortgage tapped Gerbig, Snell/Weisheimer, Westerville, Ohio, to handle its creative account, while Omnicom Group's PHD in New York will handle the $18 million in media planning and buying. GSW, KeyCorp's ad agency, beat two other small shops for the $18 million account. Champion, whose advertising campaign carries the tagline "Champion says yes," parted with Interpublic Group of Cos.' Martin Agency, Richmond, Va., in January when its chief marketing officer, Mark Benson, departed. A review was launched in September. Jones Lundin Beals, Chicago, was the consultant. AdAge.com QwikFIND aap22b

AOL buys halftime, Super Bowl spots

Time Warner's America Online will run three 30-second spots in Super Bowl XXXVIII on Feb. 1 and is the presenting sponsor of the game's halftime show. The spots, created by independent Wieden & Kennedy, Portland, Ore., will run in the game's first, second and fourth quarters and promote a new product related to AOL 9.0 that AOL declined to name. AOL has also bought two pre-game commercial slots to advertise AOL 9.0. Those spots are part of the "Life Needs" series created by Omnicom Group's BBDO Worldwide, New York, which featured supermodel Elle MacPherson. The value of AOL's NFL media and marketing package is estimated at between $7 million to $10 million, according to people close to the situation. Separately, AOL laid off 450 employees, mostly software engineers and developers. AdAge.com QwikFIND aap21v, aap22g

Bush expected to sign anti-spam bill

Congress sent anti-spam legislation to the White House last week, and President Bush is expected to sign it by year's end, establishing a federal law that supercedes all state anti-spam statutes. Marketers who had previously opposed federal anti-spam legislation ultimately supported the bill after 37 states passed their own laws, which often conflicted with one another. The high-profile passage of California's tough anti-spam law, which was to take effect Jan. 1, galvanized the marketing lobby earlier this year. The federal bill requires marketers to give consumers a right to opt out of future e-mails and requires the marketers to comply with the request within 10 days. The federal statute also gives the Federal Trade Commission authority to create a do-not-spam list; criminalizes the sending of spam with phony headers; and provides a $250 per e-mail penalty up to $2 million for sending e-mails to someone who has opted out. The legislation also allowed the Federal Communications Commission to bar marketers from sending e-mail to consumers' cellphones, except for those consumers who opt-in for such phone-targeted messages. AdAge.com QwikFIND aap21t

IRI cuts staff by eight percent

Information Resources Inc. laid off 8% of its work force, about 200 to 300 staffers.An IRI spokeswoman confirmed the layoffs, without commenting on the number. The spokeswoman said the latest round of layoffs will come primarily in the client services area in order to "streamline service by providing clients with a single point of contact for our retail tracking and analytics services." She said IRI also had "rationalized a couple of product lines that were not producing adequate revenue," but could not specify which product lines were affected. The move comes as IRI prepares to finalize its takeover by Gingko Acquisition Corp. IRI has announced layoffs of more than 450 people in the past year, with more than half that number linked to the loss of Procter & Gamble Co.'s retail tracking business to ACNielsen in July. AdAge.com QwikFIND aap21u

FYI...

WPP Group acquired Quinn Gillespie & Associates, the high-powered Washington lobbying firm formed by Republican Ed Gillespie and Democrat Jack Quinn. Mr. Gillespie is chairman of the Republican National Committee as well as a partner in the firm. Mr. Quinn was a longtime aide and White House counsel to President Clinton. The 25-person firm reported revenues of $12.5 million last year. The sale price was not disclosed. AdAge.com QwikFIND aap21w. ... Indigo Palms, a division of Tommy Bahama, has selected Interpublic's Carmichael Lynch, Minneapolis, to handle the launch of its clothing line and associated stores.Carrmichael Lynch, which also will handle media, won the account in a shootout with Havas' Arnold Worldwide, Boston. AdAge.com QwikFIND aap22f

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