[Plano, Texas] Frito-Lay North America said its Super Bowl XXXIX ad for Lay's, created by Omnicom Group's Spike DDB, will feature MC Hammer in a humorous spot that brings back the rapper as a "blast from the past." Separately, roughly $40 million influx of ad spending is planned this year for the PepsiCo unit, which includes a new national campaign for the Lay's line featuring the tagline, "Get your smile on." The effort will be handled by Omnicom's BBDO Worldwide, New York.
Georgia-Pacific, Disney ink 10-year marketing deal
[Atlanta] Georgia-Pacific Corp. has signed a 10-year marketing agreement with Walt Disney Co. that includes sponsorships of attractions at Disney theme parks and promotional tie-ins. The deal includes a new stunt show at Disney-MGM studios sponsored by G-P's Brawny and two attractions at Disney's Fort Wilderness Resort and Campground sponsored by G-P's Dixie brand. It does not guarantee tie-ins with Disney films or ABC TV shows, but it will put G-P "at the head of the line," for those deals, said Michael Burandt, exec VP-North American consumer products.
VF taps Fallon for Earl Jeans account
[Greensboro, N.C.] Apparel company VF Corp. has tapped Publicis Groupe's Fallon Worldwide, Minneapolis, to handle its high-end Earl Jeans account, according to people familiar with the matter. Fallon already handles VF's Lee jeans. Fallon declined to comment. VF didn't have a comment by press time.
Powell orders probe into Williams scandal
[Washington] Federal Communications Commission Chairman Michael Powell ordered a probe into possible broadcast license violations in connection with the money conservative commentator Armstrong Williams received from the Education Department to promote "No child left behind." Mr. Powell's action followed calls for a probe from the two Democratic FCC members, Michael Copps and Jonathan S. Adelstein. (See story, P. 8)
TiVo co-founder Ramsay relinquishes CEO post
[Alviso, Calif.] TiVo co-founder and CEO Michael Ramsay said he will step down as CEO, but remain chairman of the beleaguered personal video recorder company. The move was not unexpected as the pressure for TiVo to succeed financially grows more urgent, and satellite and cable companies steal TiVo devotees with cheaper, integrated services.
Grand Prix outfit, CBS to air Formula One in U.S.
[Los Angeles] Wasserman Media Group and DIC Entertainment have formed a new company to start selling Formula One racing this year to U.S. audiences by broadcasting a series of races and specials on Viacom's CBS. Through the new entity, called Grand Prix Entertainment, Wasserman and DIG purchased the exclusive, domestic broadcast rights to Formula One. As part of the deal with CBS, the network will broadcast four F1 races starting with coverage April 24 of the San Marino Grand Prix in Italy. In the U.S. F1 races have only appeared on cable network Speed Channel. Executives behind Grand Prix Entertainment declined to disclose how much it spent for the rights. See AdAge.com QwikFIND aaq24l
Advance launches style Web site for men
[New York] CondeNet, the online arm of Advance Publications, will launch men.style.com on January 20, a fashion, gear, and culture site intended as a sibling of sorts to its female-aimed style.com. The site will feature content from Conde Nast Publications' GQ and Fairchild Publications' Details, as well as original material generated by its dedicated staff of six. Charter advertisers include Kenneth Cole, Chanel, Neiman Marcus, and Diesel.
BBDO pitching for Orbitz project work
[Chicago] Omnicom Group's BBDO, Chicago, is making presentations to online travel company Orbitz in hopes of getting project work, according to executives familiar with the matter. The account, which isn't in a formal review, currently is handled by WPP Group's Y&R, Chicago. Representatives for the agencies declined to comment. A spokeswoman for Orbitz, a unit of Cendant Corp., didn't return calls.
Dowley expected to return to Interpublic
[New York] Interpublic is expected to close a deal this week that would bring Mark Dowley, once chairman-chief executive officer of Interpublic Sports and Entertainment Group, back to the holding company. An executive familiar with the talks said terms have not been decided, but that Mr. Dowley, now head of the marketing arm of the Hollywood talent agency Endeavor, would likely be working in the entertainment marketing arena. Mr. Dowley, who couldn't be reached for comment, has recently had talks with Omnicom Group about joining the company.
Principal begins review for $25 million account
[Des Moines, Iowa] Principal Financial Group has begun a review of its advertising account, now handled by Publicis Groupe's Publicis, New York. Chief Marketing Officer Mary O'Keefe said the review is "a routine search of what's out there." Publicis in Mid America, Dallas, is defending the account. A Principal spokeswoman said Dallas is "better situated" for the account. Eight to 10 agencies will receive RFP's in the next two weeks and a new agency should be in place in the second quarter, said Ms. O'Keefe. She did not disclose the size of the account, but it is estimated at around $25 million. The media portion of the account, handled by Publicis' Optimedia, is not affected by the review.
Cadbury puts Sunkist account up for grabs
[Plano, Texas] Continuing the creative shakeup on its beverage portfolio, Cadbury Schweppes Americas has invited four agencies to compete for brand equity advertising duties for its Sunkist soft drink, a spokesman confirmed. WPP Group's Brand Buzz, New York, has handled promotional work on the brand and will also vie for the equity assignment. Others pitching are WPP's Y&R, San Francisco, which handles 7Up creative duties; Laird & Partners, New York; and North Castle Partners, Stamford, Conn. Spending on the brand has been less then $3 million in recent years.
Schulberg, creative behind milk mustache, dies at 65
[Doylestown, Pa.] Jay Schulberg, a former Bozell Worldwide executive who created the famous campaign in which celebrities wear milk mustaches, died Jan. 12 of pancreatic cancer. He was 65. Mr. Schulberg spent much of his career at Bozell and Ogilvy & Mather. He retired from Bozell in 1999.
Anheuser-Busch is expected to begin a national rollout of Budweiser Select, its new low-carb beer, in February, according to some A-B wholesalers. A-B introduced the product in test markets in November (AA, Nov. 8). A-B declined to comment on when it would expand distribution. ... Coors Brewing Co. tapped Lee Buxton as interim chief marketing officer. Previously a VP-marketing at Coors, he has been consulting for the company since 2003, as interim chief marketing officer. He replaces Ron Askew, who stepped down last month ... Coca-Cola Co. updated its Real campaign with a new tagline "Make it Real" and goal-oriented storylines to make the effort more uplifting and give it more mass appeal. The first of five new executions via WPP's Berlin Cameron/Red Cell, New York, centers on the making of a girl band and breaks on the Jan. 18 season debut of Fox's "American Idol."