Deutsch Wrests $100 Mil. MCI Account From MVBMS

NEW YORK–Deutsch has wrested a portion of the MCI WorldCom account from its longtime incumbent, Messner Vetere Berger McNamee Schmetterer/Euro RSCG, Deutsch confirmed. Donny Deutsch, CEO of the New York-based agency, said, “We’ve been awarded all MCI-branded work.”

The account, which involves all MCI branded products and services, is worth an estimated $100 million in billings, sources said.

MVBMS retains the WorldCom B2B account and all unbranded work, including 1800COLLECT, 10-10-220 and Collect en Espanol, according to MVBMS CEO Ron Berger.

Client representative Audrey Waters said, “MCI has decided to move a portion of its business — the MCI-branded consumer advertising — to Deutsch Advertising. Our long-standing and fruitful relationship with MVBMS will continue for our specialty branded
products such as 10-10-220, 1-800-COLLECT, Collect en Espanol, 10-10-987 and MinutePass. We have chosen Deutsch for their award-winning creative work and integrated advertising campaigns — two skills which we believe will be tremendously powerful in motivating consumers to chose MCI.”

In September 2000, the client launched a review for the estimated $75 million residential long-distance account, which had been at MVBMS for 10 years.

Deutsch, among other shops, participated in that pitch before it was delayed and then called off by the client. But in January 2001, the client, whose Alexandria, Va., office was running the review, abruptly called it off without explanation.