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Doner fattens up with $25 mil Jenny Craig acc't

Jenny Craig Inc. chose Doner, Southfield, Mich., and Newport Beach, Calif., to handle its $25 million account. Doner succeeds Suissa Miller, Los Angeles. Other finalists included Campbell Ewald, Los Angeles, and Siltanen Keehn, El Segundo. Doner was chosen for the "strategic understanding they bring to the business," said Barbara Barry, VP-marketing at Jenny Craig. The weight loss company's first work from Doner will break Dec. 26.

One cruise line breaks ads; another narrows review

Princess Cruises narrowed its account review last week, as competitor Carnival Cruise Lines broke a new TV campaign. Princess winnowed the list of contenders for its estimated $20 million account to McCann-Erickson Worldwide, Los Angeles, and Lowe Lintas & Partners Worldwide, New York, said an executive familiar with the matter. The latest cut saw the cruise line trim incumbent J. Walter Thompson USA, Chicago; Suissa Miller, Los Angeles; and BBDO Worldwide, San Francisco. A company spokeswoman declined comment. Meanwhile, Carnival on Nov. 8 kicked off a campaign with a reality-based theme in which guests recall in detail what they liked about their trips. The campaign from Cooper HMS, Miami, includes 18 30-second spots, and marks a new tack for the world's largest cruise line, which has used Kathie Lee Gifford and an animated starfish in other campaigns, and has emphasized its positioning as the "Fun Ship." First-time cruisers were taped touting features such as the desserts on board, port of call golf opportunities and ship entertainment. The campaign also includes commercials plugging "Camp Carnival," the line's children's program, and the Paradise, a smoke-free ship. Spots end with the catch-phrase "Today's Carnival." Ads will run on shows such as "Who Wants to Be a Millionaire" and "Law & Order," plus cable outlets such as Comedy Central, Discovery Channel and TBS.

FDA ban of ingredient to prompt ad changes

The U.S. Food & Drug Administration on Nov. 6 said it will ban an ingredient common in many over-the-counter cold/cough medicines and diet products, forcing marketers to reformulate their products and adjust marketing. Before the end of the week, one major drug company already had reacted in its advertising. The FDA decision swiftly followed the lead of one of its advisory panels, which on Oct. 19 voted to ban the substance known as PPA because of research showing it can lead to stroke (AA, Oct. 23). Brands affected include American Home Products Corp.'s Dimetapp, Novartis Consumer Health's Triaminic and Thompson Medical Co.'s Dexatrim. The FDA's move could be a huge blow to marketers just as the heavy-use season unfolds. It was unclear whether the ruling would prompt a mass recall or simply mean future product would be altered. Novartis said later in the week it would launch on Nov. 13 a TV effort from Jordan McGrath Case & Partners/Euro RSCG, New York, for its Triaminic SoftChews that features on-screen text asserting the product is "PPA-free." SoftChews has never included PPA. Novartis likely won't be the only marketer to assert that its product is PPA-free, either currently or after a reformulation process for products with the ingredient. Novartis is reformulating products in its Triaminic liquid line that had PPA, and a spokeswoman said the company will likely flag its ads for the liquids once the product with PPA is off all shelves.

Bcom3, Burnett executive Fizdale retires at yearend

Rick Fizdale, 61, vice chairman of Bcom3 Group and chairman of Leo Burnett Worldwide, Chicago, will retire effective Dec. 31. He will remain on the Bcom3 board as vice chairman. As announced last month (AA, Oct. 2), Linda Wolf, incoming chairman-CEO of Leo Burnett Worldwide, will succeed Mr. Fizdale as she assumes the post Jan. 1. "I knew I wanted to retire for some time, and now is the right time at the end of the year," said Mr. Fizdale, who industry observers had believed wasn't likely to retire any time soon. "I will always be available to give [Bcom3 CEO] Roger Haupt my best advice as long as he will seek it." Mr. Fizdale said he plans to spend more time with his two young daughters and is considering going back to school. "The continuing education, Great Books program at the University of Chicago seems exciting," he said. Mr. Fizdale began his Burnett career in 1969 as a copywriter.

Visa plays Grinch, sues AmEx over promo

Visa USA is suing American Express Co., accusing the company of infringing on Visa's sponsorship deal for the upcoming movie "Dr. Seuss' How the Grinch Stole Christmas." The suit, filed in U.S. District Court in San Francisco, claims AmEx used the Grinch character in a direct-mail holiday promotion. Visa recently launched a contest promotion via Frankel, Chicago, called "Visa & the Grinch Give Back the Holidays," backed by TV and print ads from BBDO Worldwide, New York, as well as outdoor, in-store displays, online marketing and direct mail. In a statement, Visa said it took action to protect its investment in the promotion and its exclusive sponsorship deal with Universal Pictures. "The legal action being taken against American Express is to protect Visa's investment in our promotional efforts with `Dr. Seuss' How the Grinch Stole Christmas' and the integrity of our brand overall," the company explained. "We're currently in the process of discussing this issue with American Express representatives and are hopeful that all ambush marketing practices related to the Grinch will cease immediately." An AmEx spokeswoman said the company won't comment on pending litigation.

Hershey agrees to acquire Nabisco mint, gum brands

Hershey Foods Corp. agreed to acquire Nabisco's intense and breath freshening mints and gum brands for $135 million. The sale, which includes the Ice Breakers, Breath Savers Cool Blasts and Breath Savers mint brands as well as Ice Breakers, Carefree, Stickfree, Bubble Yum and Fruit Stripe gum brands, is contingent on the completion of Philip Morris Cos.' acquisition of Nabisco. The brands Hershey plans to acquire had 1999 sales of roughly $270 million, according to a Hershey statement. Nabisco spent $8.3 million in measured media on the brands in 1999, according to Competitive Media Reporting. North Castle Partners, Stamford, Conn., handles Bubble Yum, and the remaining brands are handled by FCB Worldwide, New York.

Estee Lauder no longer bedazzled by Hurley

Estee Lauder Cos. reportedly is seeking to replace longtime spokeswoman Elizabeth Hurley with Oscar-winning actress Gwyneth Paltrow. A spokesman said Lauder wouldn't comment on rumors, but industry insiders had forecast since last summer that Lauder would end its association with Ms. Hurley when her contract ends next year. Lauder executives were said to object to her increasingly risque public image, especially after a suggestive photo spread in Talk last summer. Ms. Hurley still is under fire from the Screen Actors Guild for shooting a Lauder ad during the recent strike.

Grey Turkish agency chief is jailed in bank scandal

The chairman of Turkey's largest ad agency, Cenajans Grey in Istanbul, was arrested and charged with taking part in organized crime after being questioned in a high-profile banking scandal (AA, Nov. 6). Nail Kecili, whose agency is minority owned by Grey Worldwide, was questioned after his client, Egebank Chairman Murat Demirel, was charged with illegal fund transfers and put on trial. Mr. Kecili has been jailed without bail. Grey Worldwide sent an unnamed executive from its London office to Turkey last week to meet with Cenajans staff. Mr. Kecili is expected to resign as agency chairman, but it's unclear who will replace him. So far, no clients have fired the agency, though financial services client Kentbank has put all its media advertising on hold until January given "the delicate state the banking industry currently is in," said a Kentbank executive.

P&G wants to let go of Wash & Go brand

Procter & Gamble Co. wants to wash its hands of Wash & Go, putting the European two-in-one shampoo and conditioner brand up for sale. Wash & Go, a European version of P&G's U.S.-centered Pert, is the latest in a series of divestitures of smaller brands during the past year that have included Oxydol, Biz, Coast, Chloraseptic and Clearasil. It also marks P&G's growing move away from two-in-one shampoo and conditioner products. Wash & Go made up less than 1% of P&G's global beauty-care sales for fiscal 2000, and the company instead will focus on global brands Pantene and Head & Shoulders. P&G said if it can't find a buyer, it will keep the brand.

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