Y&R divisions win $200 mil in new billings

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Young & Rubicam swept up four sizable accounts last week, adding more than $200 million in billings to its coffers.

Y&R Advertising's New York office beat out BBDO Worldwide, New York, to nab the $100 million Computer Associates account, according to executives close to the review. The New York office also won the estimated $35 million international assignment for Pennz-oil-Quaker State International Corp.

Meanwhile, Y&R, Chicago, is driving new business with its expected win of the $40 million Nascar account. The Midwest shop worked with direct arm Impiric to beat out fellow finalists D'Arcy Masius Benton & Bowles, St. Louis; Martin Agency, Richmond, Va.; and Richards Group, Dallas.

MEDIA DUTIES

Y&R's media arm, Media Edge, New York, will handle media for the three accounts. For Computer Associates, it will handle only broadcast buying and planning; print responsibilities remain in-house.

Across the country, Y&R's San Francisco shop netted the global account for software marketer Informix, which could reach $50 to $70 million. Y&R's work for Informix will include Internet positioning in the U.S., Asia and Europe. Advertising could roll in a few months.

Young & Rubicam's recent wins offset some earlier high-profile losses, including the $100 million-plus U.S. Army account and an estimated $50 million loss from Citigroup's U.S. Citibank consumer businesses.

The new accounts follow on WPP Group's announcement that it would acquire Young & Rubicam.

Y&R declined to comment on Computer Associates and Nascar, referring calls to the marketers. A Computer Associates spokesman declined comment.

TROUBLED TECH BUSINESSES

Y&R's technology wins -- Computer Associates and Informix -- could pose a conflict.

Both are brands facing major challenges in the marketplace. In response to weak financial results, Computer Associates' stock has been plummeting.

Informix, in turn, spooked Wall Street this month by announcing it would badly miss earnings and revenue expectations. The stock lost almost half its value, closing on July 21 at $4.34, down from its 52-week high of $21.25.

Both Computer Associates and Informix have reaffirmed commitments to marketing. Informix said it would increase its advertising and marketing budget, while Computer Associates last week named a new general manager of global marketing, Kenneth Fitzpatrick.

Earlier this month, Y&R New York won the three-year, $90 million contract for the Direct Marketing Association's consumer education campaign on privacy. The New York office also won Pfizer's $80 million Xenical account in June, and Kraft Foods' $25 million Balance Bar account in May.

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