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BA asks shop to study no-frills airlines

[london] British Airways has assigned Howell Henry Chaldecott Lury, London, the task of researching the rise of no-frills airlines in Europe. The carrier stressed, however, that it's not about to launch a new airline. "Once the research has been carried out, we will see what it means to BA," said a BA spokeswoman. It's thought that BA met with several agencies about the task, but not its main agency, M&C Saatchi, London.

Nike to sponsor Springboks

[johannesburg] Nike South Africa has announced its sponsorship of the South African Springbok rugby squad. Media speculation has put the value of the package at $5 million, but a Nike spokesman said it was "far lower than that." Peter Garbett, the Nike unit's joint chairman, said the money will be spent on match and training gear for the national team, and a youth-based program similar to the Nike International Premier Cup tournament for under-14 soccer players.

Coke pulls spot after India death

[bombay] A Coca-Cola India TV commercial by Chaitra Leo Burnett for Thums Up cola was pulled after a boy killed himself while reportedly trying to imitate a bungee-jumping scene in the spot. Prabhal Saha, a 9-year-old boy from Calcutta, was choked when he tried copying a model who bungee-jumped off a cliff to grab a Thums Up bottle from a passing truck. "We reiterate that the advertisement was an illustration of an adventure sport and was never intended to influence any person or child to imitate," a Coca-Cola India spokesman said. The commercial in April 1996 was cited in the death of a 6-year-old who jumped off his apartment building. Thums Up is India's second-largest selling cola next to Pepsi-Cola, though Coca-Cola Co. is the overall soft-drink leader with an estimated 61% market share.

Alamo picks Grounds Morris

[london] Alamo Rent A Car has split with M&C Saatchi and Foote, Cone & Belding,awarding creative independent Grounds Morris its pan-European account. Media buying, handled by BBJ Media Services in the U.K. and Carat International across the rest of Europe, is not affected by the move. Spending through M&C Saatchi in the U.K. and FCB across the continent was limited last year, but Alamo's budget is expected to increase as the company expands its European operations. Also, the European headquarters, relocating from West Drayton to Brighton in the U.K., will run its marketing programs more independently from the U.S. Alamo claims to be the third largest car-rental operation in the world in terms of fleet size, with 1995 revenues of $1.3 billion.

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