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MILLER READY TO HAND OUT $150M PRIZE; COL. SANDERS ENDS 15-YEAR TV ABSENCE; IBM LOSS PROMPTS LINTAS MANAGEMENT EVALUATION; IRI'S ANDRESS SAYS CORE BUSINESS IS SOLID; CHIAT/DAY LOOKS DOWN UNDER; CBS MAY BUY MADISON SQUARE GARDEN; CONGRESSMEN: DID TOBACCO EXECS LIE?; MERCEDES-BENZ NOW A BIT CHEAPER; SUN MICROSYSTEMS BUNDLES SOFTWARE MARKETING; KFC WANTS TO BE AS BIG AS CHINA; SAATCHI TRYING TO CONSOLIDATE MEDIA; AVON SUES S.C. JOHNSON; DE PLAS OUT AT TBWA; TCI, BERTELSMANN RETHINK GENERATION X CHANNEL; ADIDAS, NIKE ON AIR WITH SOCCER LINES; P&G PUMPS VIDAL SASSOON, ULTRA BIZ; AT&T BACK TO THE FUTURE, AGAIN; JUDGE REBUFFS HONDA DEALERS;UNITED INTERNATIONAL REVIEWS $30M ACCOUNT; VOLKSWAGEN'S $200M SEAT PITCH NARROWS; BDDP FINANCIAL BACKERS LIGHTEN $175M DEBT; VICTORIA STATE REVIEWS $25M ACCOUNT; PREMIERE CONSOLIDATES $13M GERMAN BUSINESS; HINDUSTAN LEVER LAPS UP KWALITY ICE CREAM; SUMITOMO, TCI START CABLE IN JAPAN; BACARDI UP FOR REVIEW IN SPAIN; ESPN TO REACH AFRICA IN JUNE; AUSSIE SUNDAY PAPER UP FOR REVIEW; ACCOUNT ACTION; MEDIA MOVES;COMINGS & GOINGS; NEW CAMPAIGNS; FOR THE RECORD

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MILWAUKEE-Miller Brewing this week is expected to award its $150 million national sports and local media buying account. Miller's four main agencies are vying for the business, now primarily at Backer Spielvogel Bates, New York. Besides Backer, contenders are Leo Burnett USA, Young & Rubicam and J. Walter Thompson USA, all Chicago.

LOUISVILLE, Ky.-KFC brings Col. Sanders back to TV for the first time since 1979 in a new campaign breaking next week. Actor Henderson Forsythe, decked out in a white suit and string tie, portrays the original Col. Sanders, who died in 1980 at age 90 after appearing in Kentucky Fried Chicken spots since 1968. The new theme from Young & Rubicam, New York, is "If you give people a good meal at a fair price, they'll come back to you."

NEW YORK-Lintas Worldwide top brass, reeling from the loss of its IBM account, will huddle this week at a two-day off-site meeting to discuss future direction of the agency. Already, Bill Nicholson, chief financial officer of the New York office, has been replaced by Carlos Hernandez, formerly senior VP-financial operations for the Europe/Africa/Middle East and Asia/Pacific zones. In question: the role of Ken Robbins, worldwide chairman-CEO, whose agency contract is up this summer. Also, the IBM account loss will hasten New York CEO Tony Miller's return to the Toronto office.

CHICAGO-Information Resources Inc. Chief Operating Officer James Andress said May 26 that IRI is suffering "fragility of image" rather than "fragility of core businesses."Despite quarterly earnings shortfalls and the subsequent decline of the company's stock price, IRI revenue grew 21% in 1993, he told shareholders.

SYDNEY-Chiat/Day appears to be reviving its interest in the Australian market. The Venice, Calif., agency is discussing a non-financial affiliation with local shop Omon, said Mark de Teliga, Omon chairman. Chiat officials were unavailable for comment. Chiat's previous venture in Australia was its 1989 purchase of Mojo Australia, which it sold to Foote, Cone & Belding in November 1992.

NEW YORK-CBS is rumored to be considering a bid on Paramount Communications' Madison Square Garden assets. Viacom, which recently acquired Paramount, is believed to be looking to sell the assets, which include the Garden, MSG Network, the New York Rangers and New York Knicks. The deal would give CBS Sports a new base of operations with some marquee value that could help compensate for Black Rock's loss of professional sports.

WASHINGTON-Attorney General Janet Reno Friday was asked to start a criminal investigation into the possibility that top executives from seven tobacco companies perjured themselves during congressional testimony last month. Rep. Martin Meehan (D., Mass.) and six other congressmen sent the request to the U.S. Department of Justice, saying there's "compelling evidence that tobacco companies .*.*. have committed a series of serious crimes over a period of several decades."

MONTVALE, N.J.-Mercedes-Benz of North America cut prices on some of its most expensive models. At the same time, it is ending lease subsidies for those cars in a move to get out of the incentives business, Automotive News reported. The cuts reduce the base price of an S320 sedan by $4,700, to $65,900.

PALO ALTO, Calif.-Sun Microsystems is consolidating software marketing into one $7 million to $10 million account. Finalists are San Francisco shops McCann-Erickson Worldwide, which has SunConnectglobal networks products; FCB/Technology Group, which has the SunSoft unit; and Anderson & Lembke, which handles Sun's hardware division. Other pieces to be consolidated are SunPro, now at Priscaro & Hukari, San Mateo, and SunSelect, handled by Hill, Holliday, Connors, Cosmopulos, Boston.

SHANGHAI-In a direct response to President Clinton's decision last week to extend China's most favored nation trading status, KFC said it will invest an additional $200 million in the country in the next four years.

LONDON- Saatchi & Saatchi Co., trying to consolidate its U.S. agency media operations within six months, will approach stateside clients about a centralization under Zenith Media Worldwide. Saatchi & Saatchi Advertising and Backer Spielvogel Bates may form a task force to help navigate potential clashes between network clients.

NEW YORK-Avon filed suit May 26 in U.S. District Court, accusing S.C. Johnson & Son of running false and misleading ads for its Off! Skintastic insect repellent lotion. Avon claims Johnson intends to confuse consumers in advance of the June introduction of Avon's new Skin-So-Soft insect repellent lotion.S.C. Johnson agency Foote, Cone & Belding, San Francisco, isn't named in the suit. A Johnson spokesman denied the allegations and said the suit is without merit.

PARIS-Pierre de Plas, 56, abruptly left last week as president of TBWA de Plas after a management shuffle brought in two top executives from Euro RSCG. Jacques Levy, 45, succeeds Mr. de Plas at the agency, renamed TBWA France. Mr. Levy had been president of Synergie, another Euro RSCG-owned agency.

NEW YORK-Tele-Communications Inc. and Bertelsmann Music Group put on hold plans to introduce a music video and shopping channel aimed at Generation X this year, pending a re-evaluation. A Bertelsmann spokeswoman said the project is changing but refused to elaborate. Young & Rubicam has handled.

PORTLAND, Ore.-Adidasand Nike today break separate campaigns for their soccer shoe lines. Adidas, a World Cup '94 marketing partner, introduces spots from Team One, El Segundo, Calif., starring U.S. soccer goalie Tony Meola and the company's new Predator soccer shoe. The self-deprecating tagline: "This shoe sucks." Nike's spot from Wieden & Kennedy features murals of three international soccer stars that come to life and kick an animated ball around the globe.

NEW YORK-Vidal Sassoon in July plans its largest sampling effort ever, mailing trial packettes of its reformulated haircare products to 23 million U.S. households as part of Procter & Gamble's relaunch of the line. Separately, P&G today introduces Ultra Biz, a superconcentrated formula for the company's activated non-chlorine bleach. Tatham Euro RSCG, Chicago, handles both accounts.

NEW YORK-AT&T on May 29 broke three new 30-second network TV spots in its "You will" corporate campaign from N W Ayer. The latest examples showcasing future technology include instant supermarket checkout with high tech scanners, a wireless wrist phone and global interactive TV learning.

LOS ANGELES-A suit by southern California Honda dealers against American Honda was rebuffed by a California Superior Court judge last week. The dealers were trying to force American Honda to comply with a settlement deal regarding the disputed regional marketing program, Automotive News reported.

LONDON-Film distributor United International Pictures is hearing pitches for its $30 million multimedia pan-European business in a periodic review imposed by owners Universal, Paramount and MGM/United Artists. Pitching are Publicis, Ogilvy & Mather, BMP DDB

Needham, Still Price Lintas and incumbent Young & Rubicam. Lintas handles the account in Spain, which is not under review.

MADRID-Delvico Bates will sit out Volkswagen's $200 million SEAT review, due to a conflict with its Mercedes-Benz Spain account, as will Focum Grey. Still pitching are Casadevall Pedreno & PRG, Barcelona, and incumbents Tapsa/N W Ayer, Madrid, and Tiempo/ BBDO, Barcelona (AA, May 2, et seq.).

PARIS-Debt-laden BDDP announced an agreement with its banks to lighten the agency's debt load and preserve its independence. Under the deal, BDDP's backers-primarily French banks

and insurance groups-will invest $33.3 million in new capital into the agency and subscribe to a $43.8 million convertible bond issue. The investments will cut BDDP's $175 million debt by nearly half while raising the backers' stake to around 30%. BDDP's founding managers will retain operational control, but a new oversight board led by a banking official will monitor spending and finances. The agreement protects BDDP from having to seek financial aid from other agencies hoping to turn BDDP into a parallel network.

MELBOURNE-The Victoria state government's $25 million master media account is up for grabs, as its

media agency, Leeds Media & Communications Services, has insufficient

funds to cover the client's business. Leeds has one week to prevent a

pitch by assembling enough money. AIS Media, which had the business in the past, is now handling the account.

Japan convenience stores introduce own colas TOKYO-Convenience store

chain FamilyMart Co. last week began selling its brand American Cola at 67 cents for a 350-milliliter can, 41 cents lower than most similar-size branded canned soft drinks. American Cola's entry comes a week after 7-Eleven Japan unveiled its store brand Classic Selection cola, retailing for 77 cents per 355-milliliter can.

HAMBURG-Pay TV station Premiere consolidated its $13 million business with Euro RSCG, Duesseldorf, from Springer & Jacoby, which handled its $8.5 million in consumer advertising, and Menzel, Nolte, which handled its $4.5 million in trade advertising. Premiere is a joint venture among Bertelsmann, Canal Plus and film mogul Leo Kirch.

BOMBAY-Hindustan Lever, marketer of Walls ice cream, last week purchased the Kwality brand from the Ravi Ghai family. The purchase gives Lever three major Indian ice cream brands: Kwality, which holds 50% of India's $55 million ice cream market; Walls; and Yankee Doodle. Kwality's $160,000 Bombay account, in addition to its other regional accounts of undisclosed size, move to Walls agency Hindustan Thompson Associates from Mudra Communications.

TOKYO-Japanese trading company Sumitomo Corp. will team up with Tele-Communications Inc. by the end of the year to operate several cable TV channels in Japan. The joint venture will be a multiple system operator, providing the same TV programs to all its stations nationwide. Sumitomo and TCI will also set up a company to supply programming. The new venture will operate cable TV companies

Sumitomo already has interests in, companies in financial trouble that seek outside management and any new cable TV companies it sets up or acquires. Sumitomo now provides capital to 28 cable TV companies and manages 18 of them.

MADRID-Bacardi is reviewing its estimated $8.5 million account with Clarin; Casadevall Pedreno & PRG, Barcelona; and at least one other agency. Incumbent RZR ( Lowe) will not pitch.

RANDBURG, South Africa-ESPN International in June will begin telecasting its 24-hour satellite network to 18 African markets already serviced by subscription network M-Net International.

ESPN's African signal will consist of U.S. as well as international programming. ESPN International said advertisers will support the channel but declined to name any.

SYDNEY-Publisher John Fairfax Ltd. is hearing pitches for its $5 million Sun-Herald Sunday newspaper account from incumbent John Singleton Advertising and four other agencies.

Evian Mineral Water, Paris, consolidated its $14.3 million pan-European business with Euro RSCG Babinet/Tong Cuong, from TBWA France. Euro RSCG already had Evian's business in France.

American Automobile Association, Heathrow, Fla., to McFarland & Drier, Miami, as agency of record to develop a first-ever national TV campaign for the travel company. Media is estimated at $14 million; creative budget for spots to run exclusively on Turner networks is undetermined.Tetley, Shelton, Conn., to C&M, Woodbridge, N.J., from Rotando Partners, Stamford, Conn., for its estimated $10 million tea account.

Philco, Sao Paulo, to Nazca S&S, from Young & Rubicam for its $7 million Brazilian consumer electronics account.

Twelve regional Arby's franchise co-ops in Florida, Indiana, Ohio, Tennessee and Pennsylvania to W.B. Doner & Co., Baltimore, which handles Arby's national and Richmond, Va., accounts, mainly from Griswold Communications, Cleveland.

Jenny Craig Weight Loss Centres, Melbourne, to Cyclone Advertising from J. Walter Thompson Co. for its $5 million account.

Girbaud, a jeans division of VF Corp., to Berlin Wright Cameron, New York, new agency of record for a $4 million fall print campaign.

Revlon, Barcelona, to Vinizius Young & Rubicam from Delvico/Bates and Tiempo/BBDO for its $3.7 million Spanish consumer products business.

Liz Claiborne Cosmetic Division, New York, to Warwick Baker & Fiore, New York, for the introduction of its Dana Buchman fragrance in department stores next spring.

Kaiser Permanente's southern California region to Kresser/Craig, Santa Monica, for its $3.5 million healthcare account and its northern California region to Katsin/Loeb, Oakland, for its $2 million account, both from J. Walter Thompson USA, San Francisco.

Daewoo Motor Co., Inchon, South Korea, to the Campaign Palace, Sydney, for its new $2 million Australian account.

Central Ohio Chevy Dealers Association, Columbus, to Lintas Campbell-Ewald, Warren, Mich., from Strong Automotive, Birmingham, Ala., for its $1.5 million account. It's the second victory for Lintas, Chevrolet's national agency, in winning dealer ad group business.

Procter & Gamble Co., Cincinnati, to Font & Vaamonde Associates, New York, an affiliate of Grey Advertising, from Castor Advertising Corp. for advertising to Hispanics for its Head & Shoulders shampoo brand. Tatham Euro RSCG, Chicago, is agency of record.

DHL Worldwide Express, Brussels, to Campbell Mithun Esty, London and Paris, from Graphix Arabia, Bahrain, for the air express operator's Middle East accounts.

Planned Parenthood Federation of America, New York, to Margeotes Fertitta Donaher & Weiss, first agency for public education advertising.

Port Authority of New York & New Jersey to Grey Advertising, New York, from Keyes Martin, Springfield, N.J., for the World Trade Center domestic and international account.

"Larry King Live" makes history as the first daily simulcast TV/radio talk show when the Washington-based CNN program starts June 6 on Los Angeles-based Westwood One radio stations.

San Francisco Newspaper Agency, jointly owned by Chronicle Publishing and Hearst, continued the shake-up of its management ranks. Ernest Pricco, 44, was named national advertising manager, from the same post at the San Jose (Calif.) Mercury News. He succeeds Deborah Carlson, now classified advertising director.

Toyota Motor Sales USA, Torrance, Calif., signed a $12 million multiyear deal with the Baseball Network.

Richard Bonnette to president-CEO, Partnership for a Drug-Free America, New York, from executive director. He succeeds Thomas Hendrick Jr., now vice chairman.

Lorus, Mahwah, N.J., on May 29 broke a $2.5 million cable TV campaign for its new glow-in-the-dark Lumibrite watch line. AC&R, New York, created the two spots.

Eastman Kodak Co., Rochester, N.Y., today breaks network TV advertising for its FunSaver line of single-use cameras. "The cameras that saved the day" is the tagline for the spots created by J. Walter Thompson USA, New York.

Hoover Co., North Canton, Ohio, is the latest floorcare marketer to run an infomercial, promoting a wet/dry vacuum for Father's Day with a 30-minute program appearing on cable and spot markets that began May 27. Williams Television Time, Santa Monica, Calif., handles production and media buying.

Carmichael Lynch, Minneapolis, dominated the annual Stephen E. Kelly Awards given for creativity in magazine advertising during ceremonies in New York last week. The agency won the $100,000 top prize for general excellence and received two other trophies for its Schwinn campaign. Cole & Weber, Portland, Ore., carried home the best headline copy trophy for a Doc Martens footwear campaign. EvansGroup, Salt Lake City, took the best new work by a new creative team for its Humane Society of Utah work.

Philip Morris Cos. after a long board meeting May 25 decided against splitting into two companies-one tobacco and one food. It did add new posts of vice chairman for each side. was named vice chairman-worldwide tobacco from exec VP-worldwide tobacco. R. William Murray to vice chairman-worldwide food from president-chief operating officer.

President Clinton last week renewed China's most favored nation status to the applause of major advertisers that consider China a vast untapped market for consumer goods. Eastman Kodak Co., AT&T and others said continued trade with China would be the most effective method to influence its poor record on human rights and political tolerance.

Denny's Restaurants, a division of Flagstar Cos., Spartanburg, N.C., settled accusations of racial discrimination against customers out of court, agreeing to pay $46 million to current and potential claimants. The Washington Lawyers Association has hired minority agency Caroline Jones Advertising, New York, to create a $1 million ad campaign alerting anyone who may be eligible for compensation.

Wal-Mart Stores, Bentonville, Ark., last week agreed to comply with a National Advertising Review Board request, eliminating ad taglines calling its prices the lowest in the market. Wal-Mart said it will use another theme: "Always low prices." GSD&M, Austin, Texas, and Bernstein-Rein, Kansas City, Mo., are Wal-Mart's agencies.

Martin Agency, Richmond, Va., with 10 awards including two golds, was the runaway winner at the One Club for Art & Copy's annual awards in New York last week. Other multiple winners: Cole & Weber, Portland, Ore., and the Richards Group, Dallas, each won seven Pencil awards; Goodby, Silverstein & Partners, San Francisco, and Wieden & Kennedy, Portland, each took six; and Fallon McElligott, Minneapolis, won three.

Health Insurance Association of America isn't bringing back its "Harry & Louise" healthcare ads, partly as a result of an agreement with U.S. Rep. Dan Rostenkowski (D., Ill.). The House Ways & Means Committee chairman, in exchange for considering some HIAA objections to President Clinton's healthcare package, wanted a promise the group wouldn't air new TV spots in committee members' home districts.

BBDO Worldwide, San Francisco, laid off six creative executives, including Exec VP-Executive Creative Director Rod Kilpatrick, and transferred most creative responsibilities to its Los Angeles shop.

Nielsen Marketing Research, Northbrook, Ill., fired several employees after a routine audit showed the workers had overbilled the company for travel-related expenses. A source close to the company said at least two employees in the communications department were dismissed.

White House aide David Watkins, director of administration and a one-time adman from Arkansas, resigned last week under pressure for using a government helicopter to get to a golf course.

Visa USA, San Mateo, Calif., and Sprint, Kansas City, Mo., last week announced a rollout of VisaPhone, a service allowing all Visa cardholders easy access to Sprint's long-distance network. A multimillion-dollar print and direct mail campaign from BBDO Worldwide, New York, supports in mid-June.

Chrysler Corp. plans to add a full-size luxury sport-utility vehicle to its 1997 lineup to compete with $30,000-plus models like Range Rover in the fast-growing segment. The vehicle will likely be marketed under the Dodge brand, handled by BBDO Worldwide, Southfield, Mich.

Miller Brewing Co. began testing Miller Citro, a lime flavored beer, in San Diego and Gainsville, Fla. Miller said no immediate advertising is planned but assigned Citro to J. Walter Thompson USA, Chicago.

Coca-Cola Co. is joining with in-line skate and ice skate marketer First Team Sports, Minneapolis, to promote in-line skating. Coca-Cola is also extending its general merchandise mail-order catalog with its first catalog featuring sports merchandise, Coca-Cola Sports. The catalog goes to some 400,000 households starting later this week.

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