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Bell Atlantic trims review to 4 finalists

[new york] Bell Atlantic Corp. cut its $200 million media review to four finalists last week -- Arnold Communications, Boston, partnering with Draft Worldwide, New York; TBWA Chiat/Day; TN Media; and Zenith Media, partnering with sister shop Media Direct Partners, all New York. Cut were McCann-Erickson Worldwide and BBDO Worldwide partnering with sister shop SCP Direct. A decision is expected in April. Bedford Group, Atlanta, is handling the review.

Mitsubishi hands Deutsch all regional dealers

[cypress, calif.] Mitsubishi Motor Sales of America said Deutsch, New York and Santa Monica, will handle all of its regional dealer group accounts, worth between $65 million and $80 million. The client cited the falling through of the planned joint venture of its other dealer shop, Grey Advertising, Los Angeles and San Francisco, and Zimmerman & Partners, Fort Lauderdale, Fla.

Nestle readies bottled iced-coffee brand

[glendale, calif.] Nestle USA plans to announce in the next few weeks the introduction of a line of single-serve blended iced coffee drinks in bottles. It is the same style of product as Starbucks Coffee Co.'s bottled Frappuccino, marketed in a joint venture with Pepsi-Cola Co.

Little Caesars selects Bozell for new promo

[detroit] In the midst of an agency review for its $20 million to $30 million account, Little Caesars Pizza has tapped contender Bozell Worldwide, Southfield, Mich., to create a national promotion campaign, according to executives close to the review. The effort is slated to break March 30.

VW Beetle campaign to be unveiled this week

[auburn hills, mich.] Volkswagen of America unveils its new Beetle ad campaign in New York March 12. The $40 million campaign, breaking this month from Arnold Communications, Boston, retains the "Driver's wanted" brand tag. A board member of VW's German parent said the car's motto is "Drive a smile," but VW here says that may be for the car's European launch later this year.

Hertz may send acc't to DDB Needham, Lowe

[new york] Hertz Corp. is said to be considering shifting its $50 million account to Omnicom Group's DDB Needham Worldwide or Lowe & Partners/SMS. The move would come after Omnicom completes its acquisition of GGT Group, the owner of Wells BDDP, Hertz's media agency of record, and creative AOR Moss/Dragotti. A Hertz spokeswoman said, "We have no plans to leave Wells."

GTE launching delayed campaign from O&M

[stamford, conn.] GTE Corp. launches its first and much-anticipated national TV advertising campaign this week from Ogilvy & Mather, Dallas. Rumors about troubles between GTE and O&M have been rampant since the proposed fall campaign was pushed back several times. GTE VP-Advertising and Social Responsibility Glen Gilbert said while the relationship isn't perfect, it is "on very strong footing." He called the new campaign "terribly strong" and "timeless."

Long John Silver's picks Lowe

[lexington, ky.] Long John Silver's has awarded the creative portion of its estimated $50 million ad account to Lowe & Partners/SMS, New York, without a formal review. Jordan, McGrath, Case & Taylor, New York, handled the account for the past year. Kent M. Smith, president of Strategic Marketing Group, Spartanburg, S.C., conducted the search.

Midas reviews media for $25 mil acc't

[chicago] Midas International is reviewing the media portion of its $25 million account, at Foote, Cone & Belding only since last summer. A likely contender for the account is ICG, the Chicago based media unit formed to service Ameritech Corp., that now handles spot buying for Midas. Local agency executives expect a creative review to follow, noting FCB is on rocky ground there. A Midas spokesman wouldn't acknowledge a review but said its new president-CEO, Wendel Province, is evaluating all aspects of the business. ICG and SFM couldn't be reached; FCB didn't return calls at press time.

Burnett, MacManus discuss media joint venture in Europe

[chicago] Leo Burnett Co. confirmed it is talking with MacManus Group about strengthening its media relationship in Europe. The companies may form a joint venture to serve the U.K. and other countries, according to U.K.-based trade Campaign.

F.Y.I.

Quaker Oats Co. Chairman-President-CEO Robert Morrison is planning a major reshuffling of the corporate ranks at Quaker Oats Co. by the end of this month, Crain's Chicago Business reports today. The shakeup would likely impact the posts of Exec VP Douglas Mills of the U.S.-Canadian Quaker foods unit and James Doyle, exec VP of the Gatorade worldwide business. . . . Tommy Hilfiger to Arnell Group Brand Consulting, New York, from Toth Design & Advertising, Concord, Mass., as agency of record after a review for the estimated $20 million to $30 million creative account. . . . Nestle plans to launch new creative for Taster's Choice instant coffee this spring from McCann-Erickson Worldwide, Los Angeles; it's the first new TV for the brand since the retirement last month of the 9-year-old campaign featuring romantic neighbors. . . . 3DO is said to have contacted agencies about handling its estimated $5 million videogame account. . . . Microsoft Corp. Chairman Bill Gates, in the latest sign of a strategy to present a softer image, is appearing in a self-effacing ad for Callaway Golf Co. from Dailey & Associates, Los Angeles, that broke March 8. . . . Coors Brewing Co. is testing a citrus-flavored line extension called Zima Citrix. . . . Goodyear Tire & Rubber Co. to McCann-Erickson Worldwide, Miami and Hong Kong, from Leo Burnett Co. for its $40 million account for Asia and Latin America. . . . Leap Group, Chicago, posted net income of $133,000 for the quarter ended Jan. 31, after reporting losses of $3 million for the previous quarter, and a net income of $614,000 for the first quarter a year ago. . . . 1-800-FLOWERS to Kirshenbaum, Bond & Partners, New York, from McCann-Erickson Worldwide for the $17 million account. . . . Cadbury Schweppes to Foote, Cone & Belding, Chicago, from Messner Vetere Berger McNamee Schmetterer/Euro RSCG, New York, for A&W root beer creative.

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