Coinstar Makes Agency Change to Publicis

LOS ANGELES Coinstar has awarded its $4-5 million advertising business to Publicis, the company confirmed.

The Seattle agency won the creative account; Publicis Groupe’s Optimedia, Seattle, was assigned the media buying and planning.

The Bellevue, Wash.-based client, anticipating revenue of $173 million this year, markets self-service coin-sorting machines nationwide. Coinstar acknowledged yesterday that it was reviewing the account. The incumbent, Omnicom Group’s TBWA\Chiat\Day in Playa del Rey, Calif., resigned the business, sources said. TBWA\C\D declined comment.

Coinstar would not name the agencies that participated in the review. Gretchen Marks, vice president of marketing, said, “We’re looking forward to working with the strong Publicis team and believe it’s an added bonus that they’re located in Seattle, our own backyard.”

“Coinstar will build a new category of currency-based electronic services,” said Publicis chairman and CEO Randy Browning. “That’s why we’re so excited about it.”

Earlier this week, Marks praised the work of the incumbent. “We’ve enjoyed a wonderful relationship with Chiat\Day and loved their work, but there are certain advantages to working with another agency,” she said.

TBWA\C\D won Coinstar’s business without a review in 1999. Its work for the client included the company’s first national TV advertising, a 30-second spot depicting the utility of Coinstar machines to a coin-laden tooth fairy, ending with the tagline, “You give us coins, we give you cash.”

Coinstar spent more than $4 million on ads last year, and had already spent that much through September, according to Nielsen Monitor-Plus.