The Week

Adidas signs $400M deal with NBA

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adidas and the National Basketball Association inked an 11-year global merchandising deal to make Adidas the official uniform and apparel provider for the NBA, the Women's National Basketball Association and NBA Development League. Executives close to the deal pinned the contract at $400 million, far exceeding the 10-year, $250 million contract Reebok signed with the NBA in 2001. Adidas acquired Reebok in January for $3.8 billion. With the exception of the actual team uniforms themselves, beginning in the 2006-07 season Adidas will get its logo on all NBA apparel, including warm-ups. Reebok had a similar deal. Adidas will also be able to have its logo on WNBA and NBDL team uniforms.

DDB axes 22 staffers in Chicago office

ddb, chicago, has laid off 22 employees, about 4% of its work force, a spokeswoman said. The Omnicom Group agency lost its Home Depot account, as well as consumer work for Dell Computer, earlier this year. "We've had to better align our staff with our business needs at this time," a DDB spokeswoman said.

Sanofi-Aventis mounts its Ambien defense

weeks after news that taking Ambien could result in binge eating and driving while asleep, Sanofi-Aventis has launched a new ad campaign for the $2.1 billion leader in the insomnia category. The campaign is a response to The New York Times report that Ambien was linked to traffic arrests around the nation by drivers who had no memory of getting behind the wheel, as well as a report by researchers at the Minnesota Regional Sleep Disorders Center and the Mayo Clinic who found that some people who take Ambien binge-eat while sleeping. Sanofi-Aventis' new full-page ads in national newspapers and magazines show a picture of a woman sleeping, with text underneath that reads, "The real Ambien story: It shouldn't keep you up at night." The ad addresses recent news reports that "have focused on rare occurrences of sleepwalking and sleep-eating in patients who may also be taking Ambien. But it's important to know the facts."

Delta shifts account to SS&K from Ogilvy

delta airlines is moving its ad account from WPP Group's Ogilvy & Mather, New York, to SS&K, the independent shop that helped launched Delta's ill-fated Song subsidiary.

The move follows the departure of Delta marketing chief Paul Matsen last month. Delta announced plans to ground Song, the money-losing though oft lauded low-cost airline, last October. At that time, Song's president, Joanne Smith, was named Delta VP-consumer marketing. Delta has said it plans to maintain the entertainment services and all-leather seats on Song's fleet of 50 or so Boeing 757s, which will be renovated and repainted, and to add those features to other Delta planes. Delta spends between $40 and $50 million on measured media, according to executives familiar with the situation. SS&K's assignment is expected to be heavy with nontraditional marketing. The airline is also widely expected to drop the "Good Goes Around" tagline introduced by Ogilvy.

Soyuz earmarks $10M for luxe-brand launch

ukranian vodka giant Soyuz-Victan has set aside a $10 million marketing warchest to launch luxury brand SV Supreme in seven major U.S. markets later this year. Soyuz has tapped McCaffery Gottlieb Lane, New York, for creative duties; Euro RSCG Magnet, New York, for public relations; Brand Action Team, Avon, Conn., for marketing and promotions; and Next Level, Westport, Conn., for on-premise work.


havas' mckinney named Jeff Jones, the 38-year old former exec VP-marketing at Gap, president. Mr. Jones succeeds Brad Brinegar, who remains chairman-CEO. ... Chipotle Mexican Grill last week named TDA Advertising & Design, Denver, its agency of record. There was no review for the business, which last year totaled about $3.6 million, according to TNS Media Intelligence. ... Eric Springer, 40, to senior VP-creative director, Los Angeles, BBDO West, working on Mitsubishi, from senior VP-associate creative director, Deutsch/LA, Playa del Rey, Calif.
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