French electricity draws final shortlist for $35m booty

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PARIS--National utility Electricite de France has narrowed the shortlist for its estimated $35 million annual French advertising budget to three agencies: Paris shops of CLM/ BBDO, Publicis Conseil and Callegari Berville Grey. Callegari Berville, a former independent which merged into Grey Worldwide earlier this year, has held the account since 1997.

The brief covers all brand and product advertising for EDF, a state-owned giant facing competition in its core electricity provision business for the first time this year.

Agencies included in an earlier pitch list were DDB Worldwide, McCann-Erickson Worldwide and Young & Rubicam, all Paris-based.

A new round of pitches will take place in October, with a final decision expected before year-end, according to EDF sources.

The new agency will begin managing EDF advertising in January 2001.

Media buying remains with Mediapolis, Paris, a member of the Havas Advertising-controlled MPG Group.

EDF has also put 11 other assignments to tender, including direct marketing, customer loyalty and polling activities.

Copyright September 2000, Crain Communications Inc.

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