GSD&M worked steadily to break the $1 billion barrier in 1999, with its media department reeling in the biggest account wins. After a shootout that started in mid-1998, GSD&M won the $100 million media account of DreamWorks SKG in March.
Other significant wins included a $20 million account for the YMCA's 150th anniversary campaign and Wenner Media, including the assignment to relaunch Us as a weekly magazine.
Like most agencies, Austin, Texas-based GSD&M also brought in dot-coms by the screenful, including the launch campaign for HowtoHQ.com and assignments for Supportkids.com, and Agillion.com.
It went a step further in November, when it launched Idea Ventures, a unit that barters ad services for equity in Internet start-ups.
The creative department also broke new ground, including the first German ads for long-time client Wal-Mart Stores, and campaigns that perked up clients such as Fannie Mae and Steel Alliance.
In early January 2000, GSD&M won the $100 million media-buying account of SBC Communications' Ameritech subsidiary. It followed that with the $15 million account win of the company's long-distance telephone unit.
GSD&M may be in line for more creative assignments from SBC. The company is said to be considering a review of the Ameritech creative work as part of a wholesale overhaul of its marketing strategy.