AMC Considers 4 Agency Teams

Four agency teams have been briefed in AMC’s review of media and strategic positioning duties for the cable network, sources said.

Sources identified the media contenders as WPP Group’s MediaCom, Publicis Groupe’s Optimedia and independent TargetCast, all in New York, and the incumbent, independent Haworth Marketing + Media in Minneapolis.

Each is partnering with a creative shop to handle the strategic assignment. TargetCast, for example, is teaming with independent The Burns Group in New York and Optimedia’s partner is Walrus, another independent in New York, according to sources.

Client executives briefed the contenders last week and final presentations are scheduled for next month, said sources. Annual major media spending on the business is estimated at $20-30 million.

Creative duties are not in play. AMC will continue to use creative shops on a project basis, as it has in the past, a client representative previously acknowledged.

Ark Advisors in New York is managing the search. Ark did not return calls and the client, a unit of Cablevision’s Rainbow Media Holdings, could not immediately be reached.

AMC’s roots are in movie programming — its original name was American Movie Classics — but, like other cable networks, now offers original shows, including Mad Men, Breaking Bad and The Prisoner. The network reaches an estimated 95 million homes.