L.A. Cellular has chosen Deutsch, Marina del Rey, Calif., for its estimated $25 million account, according to executives close to the review.
The win helps bolster New York-based Deutsch's West Coast presence. Earlier last week, the agency nabbed the $50 million launch of Mitsubishi Motor Sales of America's new Galant and could be in line for the national Mitsubishi account.
ARRIVED IN 1995
Deutsch beat out DDB Needham Worldwide, Los Angeles; Fogarty Klein & Partners, Houston; and McCann-Erickson Worldwide, Los Angeles and San Francisco, for L.A. Cellular. Incumbent BBDO Worldwide, Los Angeles, declined to participate.
Deutsch pushed into the crowded California market in August 1995, and in its first year gained Wolfgang Puck Food Co. and now-defunct Buzz magazine. Deutsch has since resigned both those accounts. But the shop has seen a flurry of activity since, winning the $60 million Bank of America account and $25 million in Baskin-Robbins assignments.
The agency's expanding staff outgrew its original space in Santa Monica. With this new win, Deutsch's West Coast billings are put at more than $160 million.
L.A. Cellular is jointly owned by AT&T Wireless and BellSouth Cellular Corp. The two also own Houston Cellular via the partnership.
Both companies were represented on the selection panel, along with L.A. Cellular executives.
Deutsch faces a challenge to make L.A. Cellular stand out in the competitive wireless market in southern California, where providers AirTouch, Sprint PCS, Pacific Bell Mobile Systems and Nextel Communications also market service.
Select Resources International, West Hollywood, Calif., handled the review.
Copyright May 1998, Crain Communications Inc.