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ConAgra sets sights

on giant India market

[new delhi-aug. 10] ConAgra is said to be in negotiations with Calcutta-based ITC group for a joint venture to launch its range of margarines, salad oils and frozen foods in India. The $21 billion Omaha, Neb.-based marketer is holding talks with a division of ITC, India's largest cigarette marketer, owned 31.7% by Britain's B.A.T. Industries.

More controversy

with Benetton

[london-aug. 9]Benetton has again created an advertising controversy. A poster in Europe shows a black stallion mounting a white mare. Two big Euro outdoor board contractors have banned the ad from their sites. The posters will appear in Denmark and Norway. A substitute ad is being prepared for the U.K. Benetton ads are created in-house by Olivireo Toscani.

Liquor ads a first

for Canadian cinemas

[toronto-aug. 10] The first Canadian-produced spot for a distilled spirit is being shown in Canadian theaters. A 90-second commercial for United Distillers' Silent Sam Vodka began appearing in Cineplex Odeon theaters in Ontario and Alberta this week. The spot, created by Communique Group, Toronto, features a dream sequence, mysterious shadows and moody music, designed to appeal to consumers aged 21 to 35. The ad is part of an extensive campaign that involves street-level postering in Toronto and print ads in alternative news and entertainment magazines in Toronto and Calgary. United Distillers' ad budget is $7 million.

McDonald's down to 3

to share Aussie account

[sydney-aug. 9] McDonald's Australia has shortlisted Sydney agencies McCann-Erickson, Foote, Cone & Belding and J. Walter Thompson pitch for a share of its $40 million account, held for 25 years exclusively by DDB Sydney. DDB will still handle the bulk of its advertising work, McDonald's claims. The new agency, to be chosen before the end of the month, will initially be given a promotional campaign worth around $5 million, possibly working with one of McDonald's regular joint promoters such as Walt Disney Co., Apple Computer or Sony Corp.

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