Ameritech Corp. last week put its $100 million advertising budget in review. Current roster agencies Fallon McElligott, Minneapolis; and Leo Burnett USA and DDB Needham Worldwide, both Chicago, have been invited to participate in the pitch. No outside shops had been contacted at press time. Fallon handles brand advertising; Burnett works on the consumer residential account and some business-to-business work; and DDB Needham handles small business and new media. Ameritech Cellular, which isn't included in the review, last November awarded its account to Cliff Freeman & Partners, New York. NYT Custom Publishing, the New York Times Co. division that produces custom-designed magazines for clients under contract, has been put up for sale. The unit had 1996 revenues of $13.8 million and produces seven magazines for customers.
Omnicom finishes buy of $170 mil healthcare shop
Omnicom Group said it completed the acquisition of Cline, Davis & Mann, New York, a healthcare agency with $170 million in billings (AA, Dec. 23-30). The deal makes Omnicom the world's leading health advertising company, with slightly higher health revenue than WPP Group. Terms of the transaction weren't disclosed.
Lauren, Hilfiger name global execs
Rivals Polo Ralph Lauren and Tommy Hilfiger USA have named new global marketing chiefs. Lauren tapped Entertainment Weekly Exec VP-Marketing and Business Development Marian Schwindeman for the job. Hilfiger hired Peter Connolly, formerly senior VP-worldwide marketing at Polo Ralph Lauren. Both now carry the title senior VP-global marketing at their respective companies.
McCann acquires London-based PR shop
McCann-Erickson Worldwide, New York, acquired London-based Ludgate Group, a $15 million agency specializing in financial and corporate PR and investor relations. Ludgate also has offices in New York and Hong Kong, and is part of an international alliance in 20 countries worldwide.
NBC restructures interactive division
NBC restructured its NBC Interactive division, forming five operating units-NBC Digital Productions, NBC Local Interactive Media Operations, NBC Advanced Technology, NBC Partnerships and NBC Interactive Business Development. The digital group, headed by Senior VP-General Manager Edmond Sanctis, will operate NBC.com, NBC Intercast and other ventures. The local group, headed by Executive Director Julie Buchholz, will manage interactive activities of local affiliates and owned stations. Chris Glowacki will head the business development unit, assessing new business opportunities and acquisitions, while Jim Spencer will be director of partnership operations, overseeing the relationship with Microsoft Corp. on MSNBC.
TL/Partnership creates new East Coast unit
TL/Partnership, Dallas, named David Marchi president-chief operating officer of new operating unit TLP East, from president of Ryan Partnership, Westport, Conn. TL already has about 50 employees in Stamford, Conn., and Somers, N.Y.; they will be consolidated in new office space in Connecticut with the formation of TLP East. Lon Schwear, former chief creative officer at Ryan, will take the same position at TLP East.
FCB resigns Sizzler business
Foote, Cone & Belding, Los Angeles, resigned its Sizzler Restaurants account and called the parting "amicable." FCB said the agency is devoting more time to its $18 million business with Flagstar Corp.'s Coco's and Carrow's family dining restaurants. FCB held the Sizzler account since July 1995. Sizzler spent $8.8 million on advertising through September 1996.
Cookie Monster appears in 'Got milk?' ads
Dairy Management breaks a national outdoor campaign today using the "Got milk?" tag created for the California Milk Processor Board. Creative features the first "Got milk?" spokesperson, Children's Television Workshop's Cookie Monster character. Goodby, Silverstein & Partners, San Francisco, handles.
P&G to drop Pampers claims
Procter & Gamble Co. will drop claims that Pampers Premium diapers were the "first" breathable diapers and that "other diapers aren't designed to breathe," following a review by the National Advertising Division of the Council of Better Business Bureaus. The ads had been challenged by Kimberly-Clark Corp., which introduced breathable Huggies Supreme Diapers very close in time to P&G's launch.