Activision to Test Gamesmanship of Finalists

LOS ANGELES Activision has narrowed its search for an agency to handle the TV portion of its estimated $20 million account to three shops, sources said.

The finalists are Colby & Partners and Secret Weapon Marketing, both in Santa Monica, Calif., and davidandgoliath in Los Angeles, sources said.

Representatives for the videogame maker in Santa Monica could not immediately be reached for comment.

The three shops were selected from a field of at least seven contenders. Agencies not advancing included BBDO West and Kirshenbaum Bond & Partners West, both in San Francisco, and DDB in Los Angeles. Another participant, Deutsch/LA in Marina del Rey, Calif., dropped out of the review earlier this week. An agency representative cited the shop’s current workload as the reason.

Dentsu’s Colby has been working on the account since January, when the decision was made to shutter Activision’s previous agency, Publicis Group’s D’Arcy Masius Benton & Bowles in Los Angeles. Dentsu owns about 15 percent of Publicis.

Creative presentations are expected to take place later this month, sources said.