The Week

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Universal McCann brings aboard Pool

Last week's resignation of Jean Pool, president-operations at WPP Group's MindShare, came as a surprise to those outside the agency, although insiders were whispering of it long before. She's leaving to become exec VP-director of North American operations at Interpublic Group of Cos.' Universal McCann, reporting to Robin Kent, worldwide CEO. Ms. Pool began with MindShare shortly after it was formed in the U.S. in 1999. "I'm looking forward to working at Universal," she said. Interpublic "is a great company, and Robin Kent, I love him to death." Ms. Pool is an influential figure in the media-agency world, both as a top woman executive in a field dominated by powerful men and as an outspoken critic of media consolidation. She was part of an original MindShare management team formed by CEO Irwin Gotlieb in April 2000, moving from WPP's J. Walter Thompson. "Jean has served both J. Walter Thompson and MindShare extremely well," Mr. Gotlieb said. "We wish her well." QwikFIND aao25j

We blame Joe Isuzu and Larry Tate

The ad industry may want to start working on its own image. Advertising practitioners rank near the bottom among professionals in honesty and ethical standards, according to a national poll. Only 9% of people polled by the Gallup Organization rated ad professionals' ethics as "very high" or "high," slightly ahead of car salesmen's 6% and telemarketers, with 5%. Stockbrokers-vilified this year for less-than-honest recommendations-rated just ahead of ad executives. Nurses topped the poll with 79% giving them a "high" or "very high" rating, followed by military officers,. Among Gallup's respondents, 50% rated ad pros' ethics "average" and 36% rated them "low" or "very low." That's a noticeable drop from a year ago, when 11% rated ad pros' ethics as "high" or "very high," 56% rating them as "average" and 27% as "low" or "very low." QwikFIND aao25r

Campbell ads tout improved soup

Campbell Soup Co.'s latest advertising touts improvements to its condensed vegetable soup lines that CEO Doug Conant has promised analysts will help turn around that declining business. Campbell virtually owns the $1.3 billion condensed-soup business with more than an 80% share, but its sales in the segment fell 7% to $1.1 billion for the 52 weeks ended Nov. 3, according to Information Resources Inc. Campbell has fared better in ready-to-serve soups, where sales grew 5% to $998 million vs. competitor General Mills' Progresso brand, which grew only 2% to $389 million. But those products make up less than half of its classic red-and-white label condensed soups. The ads, from Omnicom Group's BBDO Worldwide, New York, are part of the "Campbell's & You" effort launched earlier this year. QwikFIND aao25y

Detroit likely to roll more incentives

Look for sweeter new-vehicle incentives this month, especially from Detroit's Big Three. The auto industry suffered another sales decline in November, off 12% from the same period a year ago but not as precipitous as October 2002's nearly 25% drop. The Big Three's market share slid to 62% in November from 65% for the same month in 2001, according to consultant J.D. Power & Associates. As a result, Detroit is under "a lot of pressure to increase incentives," said Bob Schnorbus, director at J.D. Power. The average incentive across the industry, including models without deals, declined in September to $1,200 per vehicle from more than $1,400 in late August, Mr. Schnorbus said. Sport utilities, European and Japanese luxury vehicles and fresh models have remained strong this year. QwikFIND aao26a


John j. sarsen jr., president-CEO of the Association of National Advertisers since 1994, last week announced plans to retire. ANA Chairman James D. Speros said a replacement is to be announced later this month. Mr. Sarsen joined ANA after posts at General Foods, PepsiCo, Canada Dry Corp., Grand Union Corp. and Chase Manhattan Bank, and was active in the its renegotiations of terms of contracts with various talent unions. QwikFIND aao26b. ...Avenue A, the Seattle online media planning and buying agency, last week said it acquired I-Frontier, Philadelphia, which specializes in Web site design and development. The terms were not disclosed. QwikFIND aao25o. ... Cox Target Media will promote Paramount's "Star Trek Nemesis" on its Valpak direct-mail packs. Ten million households that receive Valpak will have a chance to win tickets to the movie or a trip to the "Star Trek Experience" at the Las Vegas Hilton. QwikFIND aao26c ...Legendary newsman and sports broadcaster Roone Arledge died on Dec. 4 in New York City. He was 71. Mr. Arledge, a longtime ABC executive, is credited with creating "Wide World of Sports," where he introduced slow motion and freeze frame views, as well as instant replays. When he moved over to the news division, he was the force behind "Nightline," "20/20" and "Primetime Live." ...Former ABC ad sales executive H. Weller "Jake" Keever died Nov. 28. He was 75. Mr. Keever worked in advertising sales at ABC Television Network for more than 30 years, his last 13 years as exec VP-sales. He retired from the network in 1992. QwikFIND aao25s

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