ACCOUNT ACTION;

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Kmart Corp., Troy, Mich., is considering six agencies in the review of its $175 million account. Included are five New York agencies: Ally & Gargano; Ammirati & Puris/Lintas; BBDO Worldwide; Messner Vetere Berger McNamee Schmetterer/Euro RSCG; and N W Ayer & Partners, along with Campbell Mithun Esty, Minneapolis. Incumbent Ross Roy Communications, Bloomfield Hills, Mich., declined to participate in the review, announced late last year.

Federal Emergency Management Agency, Washington, is reviewing agencies for a planned multiyear consumer campaign to promote its National Flood Insurance Program, estimated at $12 million.

Vons Cos., Arcadia, Calif., to Dailey & Associates, Los Angeles, from DDB Needham Worldwide for the grocery chain's estimated $20 million account.

Nynex Corp., New York, to Grey, London, for its new $12 million U.K. cable TV and telephone brand awareness account.

Whirlpool, London, to Optimedia from Lintas Initiative Media for the $10 million pan-European media buying and planning for its Bauknecht brand.

Greek Telephone Co., Athens, to Alector Advertising for a $4.5 million campaign introducing it to the stock market.

AM General Corp., South Bend, Ind., to the Richards Group, Dallas, from Competitive Edge, Albuquerque, N.M., for its estimated $3 million Hummer all-terrain vehicle account.

Anheuser-Busch Cos., St. Louis, to GSD&M, Austin, Texas, from D'Arcy Masius Benton & Bowles, Los Angeles, for its less than $500,000 Sea World of California account.

Eli Lilly & Co., Indianapolis, to Lewis & Gace Bozell Healthcare Worldwide, Fort Lee, N.J., from Deltakos/Ferguson/ CommonHealth Group, Parsippany, for the prescription antidepressant Prozac.

Upjohn Co., Kalamazoo, Mich., to FerrellCalvillo, New York, from Grey Advertising for its Kaopectate anti-diarrheal account.

Working Assets, San Francisco, to Sampson & Moore for a project creating ads satirizing House Speaker Newt Gingrich's "Contract With America" for the financial services company that donates proceeds to progressive social causes.

Fox Inc., Los Angeles, is searching for an agency to handle its fX and new fXM: Movies From Fox cable channels, previously at Livingston & Co., Venice, Calif.United Paramount Network, Los Angeles, to Kresser Stein Robaire as first agency for the fledgling TV network's estimated $20 million account (see story on Page 21).

Time Warner reportedly is close to acquiring all or part of cable TV operator Cablevision Industries in a deal estimated at $2.5 billion to $3 billion. Time Warner and Cablevision declined to comment on the reports, but executives noted it's an old rumor.

Variety Inc., Los Angeles, to Eisaman, Johns & Laws as first agency to handle business-to-business advertising for the publisher of Variety and Daily Variety.

Golf Channel, Orlando, makes its debut Jan. 17 with 24-hour programming, including pre-game and live coverage, call-in talk shows, and instruction. The ad-supported channel will cost $6.95 a month.

Telemundo Group formally came out of Chapter 11 bankruptcy proceedings Dec. 30 following Federal Communications Commission approval of the transfer of its station licenses to the reorganized entity.

USA Today Baseball Weekly will publish 52 times a year starting March 1, up from its current 44 times a year schedule. Ad rates are unchanged, but subscription prices will rise 14.3% in March to $40 a year.

Star TV, Hong Kong, said it's forming a joint venture with Sony Corp., Time Warner, Thorn EMI and Bertelsmann's BMG subsidiary to further develop Channel V, an Asian music channel. Channel V broke in May, claiming an audience of 50 million homes in Asia and the Middle East.

Nintendo of America and GTE Interactive Media announced plans to collaborate on creating videogames for interactive TV that will be channeled over telephone lines during the next few years. The first game created by the two companies, called FX Fighter, was previewed at the Winter Consumer Electronics Show.

M.L. Lowenkron to interim president-CEO, G. Heileman Brewing Co., La Crosse, Wis., from chairman-CEO, A&W Brands, White Plains, N.Y. Mr. Lowenkron succeeds William J. Turner and Russell G. Cleary, who had served as co-CEOs, also on an interim basis, since June.

Gerald E. Cerasale to senior VP-government affairs, Direct Marketing Association, Washington, from deputy general counsel of the now-defunct U.S. House Committee on Post Office & Civil Service. He succeeds Richard Barton, who takes the new post of senior VP-congressional relations. (For more people news, see Page 30.)

FOR THE RECORD

MCI Communications Corp. launched a new consumer long-distance calling and communication program backed by network TV called Friends & Family Connections. Introductory TV spots via Messner Vetere Berger McNamee Schmetterer/Euro RSCG, New York, broke Jan. 6. The long-distance telephone portion of the new program, dubbed New Friends & Family, borrows heavily from AT&T's successful True USA discount calling program. Separately, Sprint today unveils Sprint Sense, a new tiered long-distance calling plan offering standardized per-minute rates, backed by TV spots from J. Walter Thompson USA, San Francisco.Tandy Corp. is closing all Video Concepts and most McDuff electronics stores, shuttering 213 outlets so it can focus on its Radio Shack, Computer City and Incredible Universe divisions.Retailers of hard goods saw sales rise an average of 7.2% in December while soft-goods retailers lagged with an average 3.1% gain in comparable store sales, according to the NatWest retail sales index from NatWest Securities, New York. Hard goods helped Sears Merchandise Group register same-store sales gains of 7.9% in December. J.C. Penney Co.'s comparable store sales were up 5.4%, compared with a 10% gain in 1993. Federated Department Stores' same-store sales rose only 2.2%; Kohl's Corp. rose 7.6%; Kmart Corp. was up 3%; and Wal-Mart Stores was up 6.8%.Seagram Co. will expand its Tropicana unit by buying the juice business of Dole Food Co. for $285 million cash. Leo Burnett USA, Chicago, is the lead agency for Tropicana, while Lord, Dentsu & Partners, Los Angeles, handles Dole. IBM Corp. Chairman Louis Gerstner Jr. told employees the company should complete its plan of cutting 35,000 jobs by the second quarter of 1995.Carson Pirie Scott & Co. agreed to sell eight of its nine Minnesota stores to Dayton Hudson Corp. for $74 million. Separately, Carson's made a $153 million takeover bid for Younkers, the Midwestern department store retailer. Younkers said it will respond to the offer by today. Laughlin/Constable, Milwaukee, is Carson's agency; Younkers uses Ron Foth Advertising, Columbus, Ohio.

Van den Bergh Foods Co. today breaks the first-ever TV spot starring Italian model Fabio, in an effort for its new I Can't Believe It's Not Butter spray margarine, via McCann-Erickson Worldwide, New York. Print ads using Fabio will launch this spring.Coca-Cola Co. won an injunction Dec. 30 in U.S. District Court in Boston requiring Polar Corp. to revise its ads spoofing Coca-Cola's polar bear ad campaign from Creative Artists Agency, Beverly Hills, Calif. Polar can continue to use its decades-old polar bear mascot but cannot show him throwing a Coke can into a recycling bin.Sega of America at the Winter Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas said pro athlete Deion Sanders has signed a three-year contract to endorse its Sega Sports videogame and other products. Mr. Sanders will star in a Sega NFL videogame due this fall. At CES, Sega also announced plans to market a new stand-alone videogame hardware unit this fall for $199 called the Genesis 32X System.American Honda Motor Co. had no immediate comment on a lawsuit filed by Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer alleging commercials for the Honda del Sol are "a patent rip-off" of the James Bond character. The suit was filed in U.S. District Court in Los Angeles against Honda and its agency, Rubin Postaer & Associates in Santa Monica, Calif., by MGM and Danjaq, co-owners of the character. The suit seeks injunctive, statutory and punitive relief.

American Home Products Corp. said it has dismissed without prejudice the lawsuit filed against Procter & Gamble Co. and Syntex Corp. charging false and misleading advertising for Aleve pain reliever. On Dec. 27 the U.S. District Court in New Jersey refused to grant a preliminary injunction against Aleve's marketing and promotional claims.General Motors Corp.'s Oldsmobile division is considering several alternatives to replace its rocket logo. One finalist is the badge on Oldsmobile's Antares concept car, being shown at the North American International Auto Show in Detroit. That logo is an oval sliced by an angular, stylized rocket.Direct marketers are being put on alert that the Republicans' "Contract With America" may mean another postal rate increase in 1995. The contract targets $11.6 billion in budgetary savings to be obtained from the U.S. Postal Service through the pre-funding of retiree health benefits.William Forrest, 88, a former Foote, Cone & Belding executive, died Dec. 9 in Vero Beach, Fla., after a brief illness. While at FCB, where he rose to senior exec VP and director, he was instrumental in the development, introduction and naming of Dial soap.

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