Apple's Jobs rehires Olivo to head up advertising

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Apple Computer brought back its former chairman and ad agency, and it's now bringing back a former ad executive.

Allen Olivo returned to Apple's Cupertino, Calif., headquarters Oct. 1 to take a post overseeing advertising under Steve Jobs, Apple's co-founder and interim CEO. Apple is expected to announce Mr. Olivo's arrival this week. David Roman, VP-advertising and brand communications, is expected to resign.

Mr. Olivo, a former Pacific Bell marketing executive, first joined Apple in 1995 and was the Paris-based director of worldwide corporate advertising before Apple eliminated his job during companywide cutbacks last March.

REVOLVING DOOR

Mr. Olivo will work with TBWA Chiat/Day, Venice, Calif., and TBWA International's global network.

Mr. Roman, a 15-year Apple veteran, ran the review that culminated in the August hiring of TBWA Chiat/Day.

The exit of Mr. Roman will not be a surprise given the revolving door since Mr. Jobs took back control in July. Mr. Roman had been implementing the plan put in place by Chairman-CEO Gil Amelio, who was ousted in July, and Exec VP-Marketing Guerrino De Luca, who resigned in mid-September.

Mr. Roman, who in recent weeks had denied plans to resign, was not available for comment.

Asked about the status of the two executives, an Apple spokeswoman said, "That's not something that's been announced."

Meanwhile, Apple this week begins the next stage of its new "Think different" campaign with print ads and, in key markets, outdoor boards showing icons, such as Muhammad Ali and Pablo Picasso, who changed the world because they were "crazy" enough to "think different."

Lee Clow, chairman-chief creative officer of TBWA Chiat/Day North America, sees outdoor, rather than TV, as the centerpiece of the campaign.

`MANIFESTO' RETURNS

On the TV side, Apple last weekend resumed running the 60-second "Manifesto" spot that launched the campaign Sept. 28. The commercial features voice-over by Richard Dreyfus. Mr. Clow said Mr. Jobs killed a second version that used another voice: that of Mr. Jobs.

Mr. Clow said the campaign has the potential to be the best work he's done, surpassing his celebrated "1984" Apple spot.

TBWA Chiat/Day and Apple are looking beyond ads. One idea: an annual promotion celebrating Apple's picks for the world's 50 most creative people. The agency also is working with CKS Partners, Cupertino, on an Apple-sponsored classroom curriculum to teach kids about icons who changed the world.

Apple's new ads are drawing mixed reviews. "It's a really nice spot, great copy, old Apple spirit," one veteran tech ad executive said, "but it won't cut any ice with the [retail] channel, with software developers, with analysts or with the faithful until there's some product news."

Mr. Jobs last week said Apple will keep its ad spending at about $100 million a year but vowed to stretch the budget by spending more effectively.

Copyright October 1997, Crain Communications Inc.

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