Xerox keeps its Media Edge after $130 mil global review

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Xerox Corp. has decided to leave its $130 million global media-buying account at Young & Rubicam's Media Edge, New York, said executives close to the marketer.

A review launched last fall included several undisclosed shops besides Media Edge. Xerox initiated the review to ensure its clout is used effectively worldwide to get the best possible placement and prices.

A Xerox spokeswoman said she could not confirm the decision to retain Media Edge. The shop, which also held onto the bulk of Royal Caribbean Cruises' media account earlier this month, declined comment.

The self-proclaimed document company's creative account at Y&R Advertising, New York, was not part of the review, despite the fact that ads featuring singing Greek deities have been widely panned. The campaign was recently refined and an executive close to the marketer said Xerox is happy with the work.

Xerox, a household name in copying, continues to lead the high-end copier market, according to Wendy Abramowitz, an analyst with Argus Research. But, she said, on the low end, competitors such as Canon and Ricoh Co. have "cut prices and moved in quickly."


In this bull market, Xerox saw its stock price take a beating over the last year, falling from a 52-week high of more than $63 to around $19. On Jan. 14, the stock hovered near $23.

As earnings fell below expectations, blame was placed on everything from a faltering Brazilian economy to customer fears about Y2K glitches--presumably no longer a factor.

Company executives have acknowledged that earnings may continue to suffer through the first half of this year. However, they expect new-product introductions and a bulked-up sales force to give the company a lift later this year.

Copyright January 2000, Crain Communications Inc.

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