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Philips holds review for its global media account

Philips Electronics is talking with five media agencies as it searches for an agency to handle its consolidated global media buying and planning business worth about $600 million in billings. The Dutch electronics company consolidated its European media business with Carat in 1996 and now is looking to create a worldwide approach to media buying and planning with one agency. Bcom3 Group's MediaVest and Messner Vetere Berger McNamee Schmetter/Euro RSCG handle media duties in the U.S., along with Carat Freeman, Boston. Requests for proposals have gone out to media agencies in Europe and North America. Agencies invited to pitch are Bcom3's Starcom MediaVest Group, Aegis Group's Carat, WPP Group's MindShare, Omnicom Group's OMD and Zenith Media, according to executives familiar with the review. These execs said Philips' requests for proposals are voluminous and detailed. Inge Wallace, Philips corporate spokeswoman, would not name the agencies, at their request, but said a decision is expected in June.

Schroer and Murphy

join Chrysler Group

Ford Motor Co., Dearborn, Mich., announced that Jim Schroer, VP-global marketing, and George Murphy, general marketing manager of Ford Division, resigned Feb. 19. The two joined DaimlerChrysler AG's Chrysler Group, Auburn Hills, Mich., as reported first on; Mr. Schroer as exec VP-global sales and marketing and Mr. Murphy as senior VP-global brand marketing. The Ford spokesman said the vacancies would be filled, but said it's too early to name successors. Mr. Schroer joined Ford in October 1996 as exec director of the new marketing strategy and brand management office. He was promoted to his last post in June 1999. Mr. Murphy joined Ford Division in early 1999 from GE Lighting, where he had been VP-worldwide product management.

Havas unit buys majority stake in Black Rocket

Havas Advertising's Euro RSCG Worldwide bought a majority stake in $100 million San Francisco agency Black Rocket as expected and will rename it Black Rocket Euro RSCG. Black Rocket is best known for its work on Yahoo!, starting with the 1996 "Do you Yahoo!?" campaign. Black Rocket established itself rapidly by snagging Yahoo! as one of its first accounts. As the search engine grew internationally, however, its demands for a global presence became increasingly difficult for the small shop to manage. Recently, Yahoo! had indicated it would hold an international media review by midyear. Other Black Rocket clients include MTV International and Conde Nast.

Meith tapped to head FCB sports-marketing division

The New York office of True North Communications' FCB Worldwide has hired Brian Meith, formerly of SFX Sports Group, to lead a three-person sports-marketing unit. It is the second such division for FCB; it has a similar division in San Francisco. A spokeswoman said the division will work with existing clients including Avaya, Compaq Computer Corp and, J.P. Morgan, on improving corporate sponsorships of sporting events, and will also work with Major League Baseball.

Hill Holliday agrees to purchase SF Interactive

As expected, Hill Holliday Connors Cosmopulos, Boston, has signed a letter of intent to buy SF Interactive (AA, Nov. 20, 2000). Once the deal closes, likely in April, the shop will become part of GMO/Hill Holliday. It also will give the Interpublic Group of Cos. agency a presence in Washington. SFI clients include Jiffy Lube and Sallie Mae. Terms were not disclosed. The D.C. office, to be a traditional office with interactive capabilities, will be part of Hill Holliday, not GMO Hill Holliday. A spokesman for the agency said he believes there to be no conflicts. He said all Hill Holliday offices would have an interactive division.

Deutsch wins Revlon media; creative is split

Cosmetics giant Revlon awarded media duties on its $100-plus million account to Interpublic Group of Cos.' Deutsch, New York. Revlon also split creative duties on the account between Kirshenbaum Bond & Partners, New York, which will handle products sold under the "Revlon" name, and Deutsch, which will take on the "Almay" line. Until last November, advertising was handled in house, by Tarlow Advertising. Revlon spent about $100 million on the two brands in the first 11 months of 2000, according to Competitive Media Reporting. Losing out entirely was MarchFirst's McKinney & Silver, Raleigh, N.C.

Rakowitz will leave Playboy to start own firm

Cindy Rakowitz, president of Playmate Promotions and VP-public relations for Playboy Enterprises, will leave the company in May to form public-relations and marketing firm Rak n Roll Promotions. Rak n Roll will be allied with Kovel/Fuller Advertising, Culver City, Calif., which is Playboy's ad agency. Ms. Rakowitz had been in public relations at Playboy for 15 years.

Old Navy names Clendenin as senior VP-marketing

Gap's Old Navy unit has named Tom Clendenin, 35, as its senior vice president of marketing. Mr. Clendenin was VP-marketing at Walt Disney Co.'s ESPN. The specialty store chain has been struggling in recent months, including Old Navy, which had been one its best per-

formers. Earlier this year, the Gap named Amy Schoening as its first chief marketing officer, reporting directly to Gap CEO Mickey Drexler. The Gap still has senior marketing executives openings at Banana Republic unit, formerly headed by Ms. Schoening, and also at its core Gap stores.

New Line Cinema awards $100 mil account to Carat

AOL Time Warner's New Line Cinema awarded Aegis Group's Carat USA, New York, its $100 million media account, according to media execs. Carat USA beat out incumbent Independent Media Services, New York, which had done media planning and buying since the studio started more than a decade ago.


Krispy Kreme Doughnuts, Winston-Salem, N.C., acquired Digital Java, a Chicago micrcoroaster of premium coffees. ... Gateway, San Diego, tapped M&C Saatchi for its estimated $15 million Asia-Pacific account. Incumbent Interpublic Group of Cos.' McCann-Erickson Worldwide participated in the pitch. ... Jan Ahrenbring, Ericsson's Stockholm-based VP-marketing-communications director, resigned. Mr. Ahrenbring is leaving for an undisclosed post. ... Starbucks Coffee Co., Seattle, named Cynthia A. Vahlkamp exec VP-chief marketing officer, a new position. Prior to joining Starbucks, Ms. Vahlkamp was VP and general manager-outdoor cooking for Sunbeam Corp., which she left in 1998. ... Sears, Roebuck & Co., Hoffman Estates, Ill., launches a campaign for a kids' clothing line tied to the PBS series "Between the Lions," including national TV from WPP Group's Young & Rubicam, New York and Chicago, and print from ABD Group, Chicago. ... EAS, the Golden, Colo.-based nutritional-supplement company, and ABC Daytime will produce a 10-week mall tour, "ABC Daytime Soap Stars on Tour," as a part of its $10 million cross-promotional deal previously announced with ABC Unlimited, ABC's cross-media selling division.

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