Berlusconi pressured to drop Fininvest ROME-Silvio Berlusconi, the media magnate in line to become Italy's next prime minister, said he is considering placing his Fininvest group in a blind trust during his political mandate, as he would prefer such action to selling his holdings. He is being pressured by members of his political coalition, Alliance for Freedom.
Unilever uses Demi Moore in Vietnamese ads HO CHI MINH CITY-Unilever's Lux soap is running TV spots here starring U.S. actress Demi Moore. The campaign is from J. Walter Thompson Co. here and in Bangkok.
Telecom puts more business in review MELBOURNE-Telecom's MobileNet has expanded its mobile phone ad account review to $20 million by including all of its major businesses, $6 million for corporate and $14 million for commercial and consumer assignments. DDB Needham, Telecom's main agency, pitches against Telecom's other rostered agencies, Mojo Australia and John Singleton Advertising, both Sydney. Direct marketing activities, an additional $4 million handled by Clemenger BBDO Direct, may also be reviewed
Spanish carmakers match government discounts MADRID-Spanish car manufacturers are responding to the government's plan to boost car sales by cutting $730 from registration and licensing taxes on cars purchased through October for trade-ins on cars at least 10 years old. Ford Espana, the first to respond to the plan, promoted an additional $730 price cut with a print and TV campaign from Bassat, Ogilvy & Mather. Carmakers, including Citron Hispania, GM's Opel and SEAT and Fiat have advertised or plan to advertise discounts ranging from $730 to $2,190.
Torstar prepares U.S. cable Popcorn Channel TORONTO-Torstar, publisher of The Toronto Star, Canada's largest newspaper, will start a U.S. cable service next year, the Popcorn Channel, telecasting local movie listings, supported by studio-paid preview ads and spots for movie merchandise and tickets. As owner of 80% of the channel, Torstar is investing $1.8 million; the rest is owned by Halifax, Nova Scotia, TV production company Salter Street Films and Popcorn Channel's management, to be New York-based.
Candy expands three-year, $90M campaign MONZA, Italy-Household appliance maker Candy this month is breaking a new pan-European campaign promoting its high-tech, upscale washing machines, dishwashers, refrigerators and other appliances. Candy's $90 million, three-year pan-European account is handled by Conquest Europe, Milan. About two-thirds of Candy's $780 million sales come from outside Italy, giving it a 7% share in Europe's whitegoods market.
MTV Europe gets first Polish advertiser WARSAW-Elbrewery, marketer of EB beer, is the first Polish advertiser to use MTV Europe. The spots, airing this week, are part of a $1 million TV and print effort from Leo Burnett Co.
Japan set to modify product liability law TOKYO-The Japanese government reportedly endorsed product liability legislation that will now be introduced in parliament. The bill makes companies liable for 10 years after a product is sold. The bill could become effective by mid-1995.
San Miguel seeks Hong Kong agency HONG KONG-Filipino brewer San Miguel is reviewing its $4 million Hong Kong account. Pitching are Grey; J. Walter Thompson Co.; Dentsu, Young & Rubicam; and DDB Needham. Incumbent McCann-Erickson declined to pitch.
Australia's Kettle Chip burns Smith's Snackfood SYDNEY-Coca-Cola Amatil subsidiary Smith's Snackfood is using a $1 million campaign to reintroduce Country Kettle potato chips as Mr. Smith's Slow Cooked Old Style Potato Chips, after a Federal Court ruled its former package copied packaging from a far smaller company, Kettle Chip. Smith holds 57% of the $150 million market; Country Kettle chips, handled by George Patterson Advertising, Sydney, holds 8%. Kettle Chip is handled in-house.
Money-losing Vox to go off German airwaves COLOGNE, Germany-Private TV station Vox, which lost an estimated $400 million since its January 1993 introduction, will stop telecasting April 30. The failure is a blow to Bertelsmann, Germany's largest multimedia company, which owns 24.9%. The information/entertainment station captured a share of less than 1%.
Asian stations buy Dentsu TV programming TOKYO-Dentsu plans to build Asian ad business by packaging ads from Japanese marketers with Japanese TV programs and program ideas that it sells to Asian TV stations. Last year, Dentsu sold 21 programs to stations in Thailand, China, Russia, Malaysia, Vietnam and Hong Kong for a total of $2.9 million, and hopes to sell twice as many this year. Fees for an hour of programming range from $1,000 in China to $4,000 in Taiwan.
ACCOUNT ACTION The State Bank of South Australia's new $4 million account for reintroducing itself as Bank SA on July 1 to Clemenger BBDO, Adelaide, in addition to an $8 million budget for a new logo, signage and other promotions associated with its name change. ... Italian food group Trinity's $6 million account for its Rio Mare tuna to Sanna & Biasi, Milan, from McCann-Erickson.