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Coca-Cola, GM narrow reviews

By Published on .

[Shanghai, China] U.S. marketers have narrowed their shortlists in two major ongoing pitches in mainland China. Coca-Cola Co. has cut its estimated $30 million media review to two contenders, Publicis Groupe's StarcomMediaVest and Aegis Group's Carat, according to people close to the situation. The incumbent, Publicis' ZenithOpti- media, has been dropped from the list, along with Interpublic Group of Cos.' Universal McCann. Creative, split between Interpublic's McCann-Erickson Worldwide and WPP's Ogilvy & Mather, is not in review.

Separately, General Motors Corp. will hold an unexpected final round to decide the winner of its five-way pitch to introduce Chevrolet in China, believed to be worth about $2 million in agency fees.

The contest is now between two Interpublic agencies, McCann and Foote Cone & Belding. Executives familiar with the review said FCB won the pitch, but not the business, because some factions on the client side, a joint venture between General Motors and a Chinese company, remain partial to McCann, a global GM agency.

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