Leo Burnett president Brennan likely to depart
[Chicago] Leo Burnett Worldwide President Bob Brennan is in discussions that are likely to lead to his departure from the Publicis Groupe network, said executives close to the company. Earlier this month, Burnett Worldwide said Chief Operating Officer Steve Gatfield would leave at the end of the year and his post eliminated. It was unclear what other executive changes are being considered at Burnett, but one factor in the timing was said to be expiration of change-in-control agreements held by senior executives, which occurs on the Sept. 25 anniversary of the Publicis buyout of then-Burnett parent Bcom3 Group. Mr. Brennan and other Burnett executives declined to comment, citing company policy not to discuss employee matters.
Ax falls at Bates NY; closure set, 60 out jobs
[New York] About 60 Bates Worldwide staffers in New York were told they were being let go last week after Bates employees learned Sept. 18 that the New York office would be formally dissolved by the end of the year. About 200 workers remained at the Bates office at the time of the announcement, executives close to the situation said. Neither Bates nor new owner WPP Group would comment. While some would leave as early as Sept. 26, others were told they would stay for as long as six months. Bates employees moving to WPP were told they would receive letters from their new WPP employers. Bates' Seventh Avenue office space, said those familiar with the plans, would be taken over by accounting and financial staff for WPP's MindShare and by new WPP unit SoHo Square. See AdAge.com QwikFIND aap00p
Time Warner gives SS&K Road Runner ad project
[Herndon, Va.] Time Warner Cable awarded an assignment for its broadband Internet service Road Runner to Creative Artists Agency-backed Shepardson, Stern & Kaminsky, New York. SS&K said the project involves development of a multi-faceted campaign in TV, print and radio that would emphasize how using the service helps make life offline easier. Time Warner Cable could not be reached; its offices were closed due to weather late last week. Spending was not disclosed.
Alaska Airlines returns with satirical TV ads
[Seattle] Alaska Airlines returns to TV Sept. 22 after a two-year hiatus with a $10 million campaign satirizing low-fare airlines. In one spot, a traveler who can't get on a plane is given a voucher for a free bottle of water. In another, passengers are shoehorned into a "new" bench style seat. Radio spots refer to a Web site for a new, fictitious airline, "SkyHigh Airlines." Independent WongDoody, Seattle, handles. Spending was not disclosed.
Ford Freestar minivan gets `bimodal' launch
[Dearborn, Mich.] The 2004 Ford Freestar minivan will get what Ford Division President Steve Lyons called a "bimodal launch." The Ford Motor Co. unit will break Freestar ads from WPP Group's J. Walter Thompson, Detroit, in November, with media schedules scaling down over the holidays and resuming in mid-February for the post-President's Day spring minivan-buying season. The Freestar replaces Ford's existing Windstar minivan. Ads will feature the Freestar's "Tailgate Bench Seat." Spending was not disclosed.
Former DCA exec sues Dentsu over termination
[New York] Dentsu was sued in U.S. district court here by Steve Penchina, a former executive at its DCA Advertising, New York, who alleged he was wrongfully fired in December 2001. Mr. Penchina, formerly exec VP-executive creative director at DCA, said he was dismissed after missing work because worsened air pollution in the aftermath of the Sept. 11, 2001 World Trade Center attack had aggravated his asthma and other ailments. A DCA executive said the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission had previously reviewed Mr. Penchina's complaints and declined to act.
Invista, formerly DuPont Textiles & Interiors, awarded global advertising to Interpublic's McCann-Erickson Worldwide, New York. McCann will launch Invista, which has brands including Lycra, Teflon and Stainmaster, in the fourth quarter. Spending was not disclosed. Invista, with $6.3 billion in global sales, operates in 86 countries. . ... Restaurant chain T.G.I. Friday's assigned advertising to Interpublic Group of Cos.' Deutsch, Los Angeles, from Interpublic sibling shop McCann-Erickson Worldwide, New York, without a review, executives familiar with the situation said. See AdAge.com QwikFIND aap00r... Veritas Software, Mountain View, Calif., to Grey Global Group's MediaCom, New York, for its $15 million media buying account, from Interpublic's Hill, Holliday, Connors, Cosmopulos, San Francisco. Select Resources International, West Hollywood, Calif., handled the review. ... Francis Anderson is joining Publicis Groupe's Fallon, New York as connection planning director, a new post, from Omnicom Group's TBWA/Chiat/Day, New York, where he was connections director. . ... Jeff Huggins, 41, to exec VP-co-chief creative officer at Interpublic's McCann-Erickson Worldwide, San Francisco, from senior partner, executive creative director at WPP's J. Walter Thompson, San Francisco. At McCann, Mr. Huggins will partner with Kevin Moehlenkamp, also exec VP-co-chief creative officer. ... Procter & Gamble Co.'s Folgers brand is launching a cause-marketing campaign to raise $5 million to reopen the Statue of Liberty, which has been closed to visitors since Sept. 11, 2001. Via the campaign, featuring country singer Naomi Judd, P&G will donate $1 for every foil seal from its recently launched plastic AromaSeal containers. The funds will be used to pay for security upgrades.