Infinity to purchase Outdoor Systems
Infinity Broadcasting Corp. agreed to acquire Outdoor Systems for about $6.5 billion in Infinity common stock and the assumption of about $1.8 billion in debt. Outdoor Systems is the largest out-of-home media company in the U.S., and the deal makes Infinity the top player in outdoor advertising. Infinity, a subsidiary of CBS Corp., already operates Transportation Displays Inc., the No. 4 out-of-home media company in the U.S. In a statement, Infinity Chairman-CEO Mel Karmazin said: "The acquisition of Outdoor Systems' outstanding portfolio of out-of-home media assets extends our reach and establishes Infinity as the undisputed leader in the outdoor advertising business." William Levine will remain chairman of Outdoor Systems and Arthur R. "Arte" Moreno will remain president-CEO; both will join Infinity's board. William Apfelbaum, president-CEO of TDI, will retain his title as well, an Infinity spokesman said. Outdoor Systems and TDI will "work together, but they'll remain as separate subsidiaries within the corporation," the spokesman said.
Applebee's names field for $35.5 mil review
Applebee's International announced contenders for its $35.5 million account. They are Foote, Cone & Belding, Chicago; McKinney & Silver, Raleigh, N.C.; Messner Vetere Berger McNamee Schmetterer/Euro RSCG, New York; Richards Group, Dallas; Saatchi & Saatchi, New York; Temerlin McClain, Irving, Texas; and incumbent Wyse Advertising, Cleveland. The 1,100-unit casual dining chain is expected to make a decision in July. Effective Marketing Strategies, Marina del Rey, Calif., is the consultant on the review.
Marriott's 'priorities' spark split with McCann
Marriott Hotels, Resorts & Suites, Bethesda, Md., split with McCann-Erickson Worldwide, New York, over a "realignment of marketing priorities" after four years working together. The account is worth an estimated $10 million; McCann will continue to work for other Marriott International properties including Renaissance Hotels & Resorts. Marriott isn't expected to conduct an imme- diate review. Creative will be handled internally and through other Marriott agencies. Lowe & Partners/SMS will handle media buying.
MacManus acquires Kaplan Thaler agency
MacManus Group, New York, is acquiring Kaplan Thaler Group just two years after President-CEO Linda Kaplan Thaler started up the shop. Kaplan Thaler will remain a standalone agency under the MacManus umbrella reporting directly to Chairman-CEO Roy Bostock. Kaplan Thaler recently lost the estimated $50 million Toys "R" Us account to Leo Burnett USA, Chicago. Ms. Kaplan Thaler once coined the "I don't wanna grow up, I'm a Toys 'R' Us kid" theme. The agency, which has specialized in marketing to women and children, will now be able to access the worldwide resources of MacManus for its clients, including the American Red Cross and several Clairol brands at Bristol-Myers Squibb Co.
Newman, Burke are promoted at Ziff-Davis
Nancy Newman was promoted to exec VP-corporate sales at Ziff-Davis, from senior VP-publishing director of PC Magazine. She succeeds Joe Gillespie, now chief operating officer of ZDTV (AA, May 17), and will be responsible for growing revenue by delivering integrated marketing solutions that help companies reach their business and marketing goals. Ms. Newman will report to Terri Holbrooke, group president of ZD Corporate Operations. Also, Rita Burke was promoted to the new post of senior VP from executive director-corporate sales. She will report to Ms. Newman and is responsible for managing Ziff-Davis' corporate customer relationships worldwide.
'Outside' magazine bags big travel show
Outside purchased the International Adventure Travel & Outdoor Show. The magazine will extend its brand to include the Chicago-based event, one of the largest and longest-running adventure travel shows, attended by some 20,000 adventure-hungry travelers each year with more than 400 exhibitors. "This strategic purchase makes Outside the undisputed mouthpiece for the adventure travel market . . . Our acquisition of the International Adventure Travel & Outdoor Show, along with our existing brand programs including Outside Online, Outside Television, Outside Radio and Outside Books, will undoubtedly strengthen Outside's position as the authority on adventure travel," said Mariah Media Chairman and Outside Editor in Chief Lawrence J. Burke. The show will be renamed the Outside's International Adventure Travel & Outdoor Show.
Former FCB/S.F. prez Boland joins Pickett
Jack Boland, 42, former president-CEO of Foote, Cone & Belding's San Francisco office, has joined Pickett Communications as president and equity partner. Founder Terry Pickett formerly held the title of president and now becomes chairman of the shop, which has more than a dozen employees. Clients include Xerox Corp. and TodaysSports.com, an Internet company providing sports scores