What's Bill Gates' favorite magazine? The Economist, a title he frequently mentions in his speeches. The squeaky voiced billionaire last week told the Newspaper Association of America he reads the mag cover to cover-but not for work. "Just for fun," BillG explained. "Strictly goofing off for me." To which emcee and NYTimes Publ. Arthur Sulzberger Jr. retorted, "Yes, that's how we all like to relax. Reading The Economist." The mag would love to do a promo around its adoring fan, but it's been turned down. Still, don't rule out a business deal between the magazine and Microsoft: There have been rumors of a Web deal between the two.
Stepping into Nike Jeeps?
Just drive it? The inside track has Chrysler Corp. approaching Nike about a Nike Jeep. Jeep executives deny it. But Jeep may want a sole mate. 1997, after all, is the last model year for the top-line Jeep Grand Cherokee model with outdoor gear marketer Orvis.
Not the same old drill at McCann
Do top execs at McCann/
NY have a screw loose? Well, not anymore. In the agency's winning pitch for the $30 million Black & Decker account, high-level staffers attended what Exec VP-Account Mgmt. Dir. Eric Keshin calls "tool boot camp." Keshin went with James Heekin, exec VP-reg'l dir. North America, and Exec VP-Creative Dir. Nina DiSesa to a three-day session in Arizona with hundreds of B&D sales reps early this year. Mission: Learn tools from the bottom up. DiSesa, for one, has become expert with the circular saw.
PCs go direct
Goldberg Moser O'Neill/SF is in development on a TV brand campaign for Dell Computer. Officially, word is the booming PC seller hasn't formally signed off. But prospects look good; Dell has been considering a 50% boost in ad spending (AA, March 10).
NYC . . . Cannes
. . . Aghast
Int'l Management Group has signed as agent to sell official product sponsorships for NYC. You know, the official soda, sneaker, pepper spray, handgun. . . . Petersen's Golfing, relaunching this week, includes an essay by Bill Clinton lobbying private courses to open up for public play. . . . Get Cannes-ed by a headhunter? Ad creatives headhunter Judy Wald Agency is making a grant to send a U.S. team to compete in the Cannes ad festival's creative competition for under-thirtysomethings. . . . TBWA Chiat/Day has a new executive dining room: Taco Bell, opened by its new client across the street from the TBWA NYC HQ. . . . "The fastest way to get gas." TBWA's new taco slogan? Nah. It's Mobil's pitch for new autopay pumps. . . . An Egan, Minn., merchant abruptly ended a phone call with a friend of Adages, explaining: "I can't talk now. The Beanie Babies just arrived. I've got three police cars outside and the cops are trying to control the crowd. The women followed the UPS truck into town, right to our store . . . ."
Compiled by Bradley Johnson with news from Alice Z. Cuneo, Scott Donaton, Fred Danzig, Jean Halliday, Ann Marie Kerwin, Laura Petrecca, Judann Pollack and Pat Sloan.
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