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Review talk flying at Northwest Airlines

[minneapolis] Northwest Airlines is weighing an agency search, said people close to the situation. The airline spent $33 million in U.S. measured media last year, according to Taylor Nelson Sofres' CMR. A Northwest spokeswoman said there is no review and declined to say whether one is in the works. Interpublic Group of Cos.' Carmichael Lynch, Minneapolis, handles Northwest domestic advertising and shares international work with Asia-Pacific offices of WPP Group's Ogilvy & Mather Worldwide. Carmichael Lynch and Ogilvy last week said they knew of no impending moves by Northwest. However, another executive familiar with Northwest agency relationships said Carmichael Lynch's ties with Northwest have suffered following marketing management changes at the airline.

BK's roster-flip ends ties to Bcom3 shops

[miami] Interpublic shops are in and Bcom3 Group agencies out as Diageo's Burger King Corp. consolidated an estimated $250 million in business, according to executives familiar with the situation. A Burger King spokeswoman declined comment. The changes were expected (AA, July 1). Losing Bcom3 shops were D'Arcy Masius Benton & Bowles, which handled regional marketing and promotion and some media buying for BK, and sibling MediaVest, both New York. Interpublic's Deutsch LA, Los Angeles, which has handled BK project work since May, picks up D'Arcy's field-marketing creative duties. Media First International, New

York, acquired last month by Interpublic, will add MediaVest's $200 million in national broadcast and syndicated TV media buying to the estimated $50 million in BK cable and print buying it already handles, according to one executive. Deutsch declined comment. D'Arcy, MediaVest and Media First did not return calls.

Humor powers ads for Nike's Presto

[beaverton, ore.] Nike is breaking the biggest TV, print and Web push for Presto backless athletic shoes since the brand's launch several years ago. Spending was not disclosed. Three TV spots, which began airing July 12, feature French urban gymnasts scaling buildings to escape an angry chicken, capture a scary cat and retrieve the belongings of a girlfriend. Wieden & Kennedy, Portland, Ore., handles.

Carat exits BofA pitch; four shops left in race

[new york] Aegis Group's Carat USA exited the $160 million Bank of America media review, now down to Bcom3's Starcom, Chicago, and three New York agencies: Interpublic's Initiative Media; Omnicom Group's PHD; and Zenith Media, owned by Publicis Groupe and Cordiant Communications Group. Carat's departure was attributed to a wish to avoid potential conflicts with Bank One, whose media buying and planning account Carat is believed to be close to winning. Carat, Bank One and Bank of America did not return calls.

Lipton Iced Tea brand gets `real' in August ads

[Purchase, N.Y.] Pepsi-Lipton Tea Partnership launches an estimated $3 million campaign for PepsiCo's Lipton Iced Tea in August magazines and radio. Creative employs a "Real is refreshing" tag. It replaces "You'll feel good, maybe too good." Three print executions will run along with two radio commercials starting Aug. 1. WPP's J. Walter Thompson Co., New York, handles. The brand received $14.2 million in measured media last year, per Taylor Nelson Sofres' CMR.

Big sales, profit gains forecast for NBC 3Q

[new york] General Electric Co., in a bullish forecast for its NBC, predicted the TV unit's third-quarter revenue would be 25% to 30% above year-ago levels, with operating profit 50% to 60% higher than its 2001 quarter. It said NBC's prices in third-quarter scatter-market sales were 14% higher than upfront rates set last summer.

Summer Jaguar ads use `London' theme

[irvine, calif.] "London calling" is the theme of a summer ad campaign for Jaguar cars, to be previewed July 22 by Ford Motor Co.'s Jaguar North America unit. Creative touts the brand's British heritage while trying to boost Jaguar's appeal to a younger audience. WPP's Y&R Cos., Irvine, Calif., handles. Spending was not disclosed. In 2001, Jaguar spent $66.7 million in measured media, according to CMR.

FYI . . .

AOL Time Warner said it is searching for a CEO to lead its troubled America Online unit. America Online Chief Operating Officer Robert Pittman has been interim CEO of America Online since April. ... Reebok International expressed support for its star endorser, National Basketball Association standout Allen Iverson, charged by Philadelphia police with assault and firearms violations. "We firmly believe Allen will be vindicated," the company said. ... Nationwide Insurance signed a five-year pact with the Professional Golf Association Tour to be the name sponsor of what is now the Tour. Terms were not disclosed. The change is effective in 2003. The new name and brand positioning for the tour will be unveiled later this year. ... Magazine ad pages as measured by Publishers Information Bureau fell 1.2% in June, the smallest year-to-year decline thus far in 2002. Seven of 12 ad categories showed gains over June 2001. Total ad pages in 2002's first half were off 9.9% from a year ago, PIB said. ... Unilever Bestfoods awarded its $25 million Lipton side dishes and soups account to Omnicom's DDB Worldwide, New York, from Bcom3-backed Bartle Bogle Hegarty, New York. ... to Interpublic's DraftWorldwide, Chicago, as its direct agency, without a review, said an executive familiar with the situation. Its primary focus will be direct-response TV, the executive said. Spending was not disclosed. DraftWorldwide declined comment. Havas' Arnold Worldwide, Boston, handles did not return calls. ... Coors Brewing Co. assigned its $15 million U.S. Hispanic account to Bromley Communications, San Antonio, Texas, partly owned by Bcom3, from Casanova Pendrill Publicidad, Irvine, Calif., partly owned by Interpublic.

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