In a significant expansion of Mel Karmazin's authority, CBS Corp. named him to the new post of president-chief operating officer. It makes the former chairman-CEO, CBS Station Group the heir apparent to Chairman Michael Jordan. Under the new structure, Mr. Karmazin adds control over the CBS TV network and CBS Cable to his existing authority over CBS TV and radio stations. CBS TV President Leslie Moonves adds the title of CEO for CBS TV and reports to Mr. Karmazin. He adds responsibility for CBS Sports, CBS News and affiliate relations to his existing role over CBS Entertainment and CBS Enterprises.
Koplovitz run ends at USA Networks
Kay Koplovitz, founder and chairman-CEO of USA Networks, announced last week that she was leaving the company. The move had been expected since mid-February, when Barry Diller took over as chairman-CEO of parent company USA Networks Inc.
Maalox spot modified after NAD review
A TV commercial for Maalox antacid, which makes comparative superiority claims over rival Pepcid AC, will be modified by the advertiser, said National Advertising Division of the Council of Better Business Bureaus. NAD said Maalox marketer Novartis Consumer Health agreed to make changes after NAD found a beaker demonstration used in the commercial did not "accurately portray the difference between Pepcid AC and Maalox's mechanisms of actions."
Price war brewing in coffee business
One week after Procter & Gamble Co. lowered prices by 10 cents on the majority of its Folgers coffees, Kraft Foods' Maxwell House Coffee announced a steeper cut on its rival Maxwell House coffees. The company said in a "move to stimulate growth," it will cut prices, effective May 11, on selected roast and ground coffees by 25 cents per equivalent pound.
Jordan McGrath shop altering its name
Jordan McGrath Case & Taylor, New York, has changed its name to Jordan McGrath Case & Partners. CEO Pat McGrath said the change acknowledges the evolution of the agency's second generation of management.
Jergens buys B&L skincare brands
Kao Corp.'s Andrew Jergens Co. acquired Bausch & Lomb's skincare business, including Curel and Soft Sense, for $135 million cash plus the assumption of liabilities. Bozell Worldwide, New York, has been the agency on those brands. Jergens uses Deutsch, New York, and Suissa Miller, Los Angeles.
Cable's VH1 hires Rubin Postaer
MTV Networks assigned advertising for its VH1 cable TV network to Rubin Postaer & Associates, Santa Monica, Calif., following a review. There was no previous agency of record. Spending was estimated at $10 million. Rubin will prepare a TV and print branding campaign for VH1. The channel targets the 18-to-49 age group with programming that includes documentary-style shows on singers and music groups.
Semsky leaves BBDO media job
Arnie Semsky, exec VP-director of media programming services at BBDO Worldwide, New York, has left the company. Mr. Semsky, who has been with BBDO since 1979, said he wanted to pursue interests in teaching and consulting. BBDO management does not plan to replace him.
J&J transfers TV buying to McCann-Erickson
Johnson & Johnson consolidated TV buying at McCann-Erickson Worldwide, New York, moving cable TV and syndicated TV from in-house agency Raritan Advertising. McCann already handled J&J's network TV. Spending was not disclosed, but Competitive Media Reporting said J&J spent $88 million in syndication and $68 million on cable in 1997.
Club picks Murphy as adwoman of the year
Women's Advertising Club of Chicago has chosen Andrea Murphy, president of Grant/Jacoby, as its 1998 Adwoman of the Year. Ms. Murphy, who was the agency's first female president and the first to be elected to its board in 1995, will be feted May 28 at the Drake Hotel.
Efamol supplements go to Kirshenbaum
Efamol Nutraceuticals, Boston, named Kirshenbaum Bond & Partners, New York, as first agency for its estimated $10 million account. Kirshenbaum will launch a campaign for Efamol natural supplements PMS Control and Efalex, a supplement for eye and brain function. Arnold Direct, Boston, was the other finalist in the review.