Car-X Considers Dividing Creative, Media

CHICAGO Car-X has contacted agencies about its $3 million account, which it may unbundle, a company executive said.

The Chicago-based chain’s consolidated account has been at Grant Jacoby here for almost five years. The client has gathered capabilities from several Chicago-area shops and expects by next week to have a group with which it will schedule presentations, said Allison Bauman, advertising manager.

“We’ve been exploring options, including a la carte creative, a la carte media,” Bauman said. Grant Jacoby will be included in the process, she said.

Grant Jacoby president Andrea Murphy said on Monday she had no knowledge of the review.

Among factors Bauman said led the company to look at other agencies were the departures from Grant Jacoby in April of chief creative Bernie Pitzel and creative director Denny Hebson, who formed their own shop called Romani Bros., with cornerstone client ATA Airlines of Indianapolis.

Car-X, which operates about 180 auto repair shops, spent $3 million on media last year and $2 million through August of this year, according to Nielsen Monitor-Plus.

Grant Jacoby’s work has maintained the long-running tagline, “Don’t worry, call the Car-X man.” Spots attempt to demonstrate that the chain, formerly best known as a muffler shop, does a variety of automotive repairs.