Rapp Collins elevates five
Direct marketing giant Rapp Collins Worldwide promoted five people as part of a restructuring. The Omnicom Group shop elevated Robert Horvath, formerly corporate chief financial officer, to the new position of president-direct marketing with all agency operations reporting into him. Edward R. McNally Jr., formerly president-chief operating officer, assumes a new role as president-diversified services and will oversee the agency's new corporate marketing and communications department. Cathy Clift, formerly exec VP of the Dallas offices, will be chief planning officer for the network. Martin Macdonald, formerly exec VP-chief creative officer, Dallas, becomes its chief creative officer. Caroline Chilvers, previously team leader and senior VP at Rapp Collins' New York office, becomes exec VP-corporate marketing and communications. Rapp Collins said it was centralizing its structure so that it could better service clients.
Slim-Fast drops outspoken Whoopi
Unilever's slim-fast has pulled its ads featuring comedian Whoopi Goldberg citing disappointment in Ms. Goldberg's remarks at a Democratic fund-raiser at Radio City Music Hall in New York last week. Terry Olson, general manager and VP-marketing for the diet plan, offered sincere regret that Ms. Goldberg's remarks "offended some of our consumers," and said the ads in which Ms. Goldberg talked of her weight loss would no longer be on the air. A company spokesperson said there are no plans to work with Ms. Goldberg in the future, even though she had been slated to tout Slim-Fast's low-carb lineup next year. Ms. Goldberg made a sexual pun out of President Bush's last name, an incident that has caused even presidential candidate John Kerry and running mate John Edwards to distance themselves from the event. Ms. Goldberg's remarks prompted an angry reaction from the Bush campaign and have fueled discussions on conservative Web sites.
Digitas to acquire Modem Media
Digitas has reached agreement to acquire Modem Media, one of the last publicly traded interactive agencies to survive the dot-com bust. The deal, a stock swap worth about $200 million, is expected to close in the fourth quarter, pending regulatory and shareholder approval. Modem will continue to operate separately from Digitas, which will give the company a second network. Plans call for merging the Digitas offices in San Francisco and London into Modem's operations. The two shops already share several key clients, including Time Warner's America Online, Delta Air Lines and General Motors Corp. AdAge.com QwikFIND aap81h
Emil Wilbekin left as editorial director and VP-brand development for Vibe Ventures, to become VP-development of urban designer Marc Ecko Collection. He will oversee the development of TV, book and entertainment projects for Marc Ecko Enterprises. He will also serve on the editorial board of Ecko's Complex magazine.