Coke Card `morgue' ad pulled after complaints
Coca-Cola Co. said it will stop airing a controversial TV spot for its teen-targeted Coke Card promotion. The ad features a "dead" teen in a morgue clutching a Coke Card. Complaints were made by members of Internet support groups for parents who lost children to homicides. Coca-Cola said the spot, and three others from D'Arcy Masius Benton & Bowles, St. Louis, had completed scheduled runs and denied complaints were behind the decision to stop using it. The "morgue" spot won't return but the other three ads will toward the end of the summer, a spokesman said.
Y&R acquires Capital Consulting
Young & Rubicam acquired Capital Consulting & Research, a New Canaan, Conn.-based consultancy, as expected (AA, April 13). Capital Consulting will become a unit of Wunderman Cato Johnson, Y&R's direct marketing unit. Capital Consulting President John Bingle will become chairman-CEO of Wunderman. Wunderman's current CEO, Barbara Jack, will take on an interim role as executive director of Y&R handling new business and developing the event and multicultural marketing ares before assuming what the company called a "major new management role" in 1999.
Radio ad spending rises 9% in 1st qtr.
First-quarter radio ad spending was up 9% over the year-ago period, said the Radio Advertising Bureau, New York. National sales climbed 121% in the period, while local sales were up 9%. Dollar figures were not given. RAB said the calculations are based on its radio revenue index of more than 100 markets. Radio ad spending in March was up 12%, RAB said, with local up 13% and national up 11%.
Northlich wins $10 mil Star-Kist acc't
Star-Kist Seafood Co. named Northlich Stolley LaWarre, Cincinnati, agency of record for its estimated $8 million to $10 million account. The company most recently worked on a project basis with Tom Reilly Consortium, Evanston, Ill. A campaign for its tuna brand from Northlich breaks this month, using the Charlie the Tuna character and the "Sorry, Charlie" line.
Seagram taps Grey for VO, 7 Crown, buying
Seagram Americas named Grey Advertising, New York, for electronic media buying and to handle its VO Canadian and 7 Crown, as expected (AA, April 27). Ogilvy & Mather Worldwide formerly handled VO and 7 Crown. Buying was divided among roster shops, with O&M handling radio buying.
Iridium ups spending on campaign to $140 mil
Iridium, the satellite global telephone service from a consortium led by Motorola, will launch a much-bigger-than-expected $140 million global introductory campaign soon, Vice Chairman-CEO Ed Staiano told a National Press Club audience in Washington. The campaign was previously believed to be a $50 million effort. Ammirati Puris Lintas, New York, won the assignment last fall.
Nickelodeon, CTW to start Noggin network
Reruns of "Sesame Street" are finally making it to cable TV on a new network, Noggin, a joint venture between Viacom's Nickelodeon and Children's Television Workshop. Noggin, at least initially, will be commercial-free. Reruns of Nickelodeon's "Blue's Clues" will also run on the network, as well as a number of other programs from Nickelodeon and CTW. Noggin is scheduled to be launched next January.
Ziff-Davis grosses $400 mil in IPO
Ziff-Davis went public April 29, selling 25.8 million shares at $15.50 each to gross $400 million in one of the year's biggest offerings. The tech media and trade show company's stock closed on the New York Stock Exchange at 173/16, up from the initial price of 151/2. Japanese parent Softbank Corp. reduced its stake to 74% with the sale. Ziff-Davis Chairman-CEO Eric Hippeau opened trading on the exchange. "Ringing the opening bell of the New York Stock Exchange was certainly the most exciting day of my professional life," he said.
McCann shifts PowerAde work to N.Y. from Seattle
McCann-Erickson Worldwide shifted creative for Coca-Cola Co.'s PowerAde brand to its New York office from its Seattle shop. The reassignment of creative for the $10 million account is not expected to cost jobs in the Seattle office, an executive said. The Seattle office has been positioned as a creative center in the McCann network.
Wenner magazines make strong awards showing
Rolling Stone last week won the 1998 National Magazine Award for general excellence (more than 1 million circulation). Rolling Stone also won for reporting, while Wenner Media title Men's Journal won for personal service. In the awards presentation last week, Outside won its third general excellence (400,000 to 1 million circulation) award in three years. Preservation, an architecture magazine, also won for general excellence (100,000 to 400,000 circulation), as did North Carolina-based DoubleTake (less than 100,000 circulation). Entertainment Weekly won in two categories, design and special interest; The New Yorker for fiction and essays & criticism; Harper's Magazine for feature writing; The Atlantic Monthly for public interest; W for photography; The Sciences for single-topic issue; and The Sporting News Online for general excellence in new media.
L.A. magazine `Buzz' calls it quits
Buzz, the 8-year-old Los Angeles city title, closed last week when its new owner, Sharon Chada, filed for bankruptcy. Rival publication Los Angeles has acquired the subscription lists and trademarks. A spokeswoman for Detour, another West Coast-based title, said negotiations for Detour to acquire Buzz and continue publishing it as a weekly just recently broke down. Ms. Chada, a technology executive who had a majority interest with her husband in Santa Monica, Calif.-based Osicom Technologies, bought Buzz from Thai media mogul Sondhi Limthongkul last fall. The title was originally started in 1990 by Eden Collinsworth, Susan Gates and Alan Mayer.
Thomson drops Network Computer
Thomson Consumer Electronics abandoned its slow-selling RCA Network Computer, marking a blow to Oracle Corp.'s attempt to play in the consumer market. The Oracle-backed Network Computer Inc. provided software for the Internet-on-TV set-top box, launched last August to compete with Microsoft Corp.'s WebTV (AA, July 21). Fledgling NetChannel Inc., which provided RCA's Internet service, was expected last week to pull the plug on the service.
ANA creating multicultural panel
Association of National Advertisers said it is creating a new multicultural marketing committee dedicated to "branding, tracking, benchmarking and integrating multicultural marketing efforts within a corporation's general advertising program." AT&T Corp. VP-Advertising and Marketing Communications James D. Speros heads the committee.
EnergOne alliance is being restructured
EnergyOne, an electric utility industry marketing alliance between UtiliCorp United, Kansas City, Mo., and PECO Energy Co., Philadelphia, is being restructured due to a sluggish start. EnergyOne planned to sell energy service and non-energy products -- long-distance phone service through an AT&T Corp. alliance and home security through an ADT alliance -- under the EnergyOne brand. No other utilities signed on with EnergyOne, the companies said. Both said they plan to continue to use the EnergyOne brand in their service territories.