Four Agencies in Pentax Picture

By Glen Fest

DALLAS–Rives Carlberg of Houston is among four agencies selected as finalists for the estimated $7 million Pentax Cameras account that recently departed from Minneapolis shop Carmichael Lynch.

Presentations are set for the week of May 12, according to the Englewood, Colo.-based client, and pit Rives against Portland, Ore., firm Borders, Perrin & Norrander and two nearby Denver agencies–Thomas & Perkins and Karsh & Hagen Communications.

Officials from each of the shops declined comment.

Peterson said there was no rift between Pentax and its previous shop. ‘I wouldn’t want you to think we thought anything less than the world of Carmichael Lynch,’ he said.

Carmichael was hired in January 1994 to promote the company’s line of SLR and Compact Zoom cameras, as well as Pentax Security equipment.

Pentax spent $6.6 million in major media advertising in 1996, according to Competitive Media Reporting. Lorri Peterson, manager of marketing communications for Pentax, said a majority of that was spent on print ads in national consumer magazines. She said the company will maintain that spending level for 1997.

Peterson said all four agencies were selected for previous work with retail products, such as Rives’ involvement with Compaq Computers, Igloo and Rheem Air Conditioning & Heating Systems.

‘Their previous work and the size (of each agency) were the reasons,’ said Peterson. ‘We thought they do really good work with what they’re doing.’

Peterson said the parting with Carmichael Lynch was amicable.

Sources said Pentax wants to focus more attention on promotional efforts rather than image advertising. Peterson, however, said any decisions on the direction of Pentax’s marketing will not be made until after an agency is chosen.

Contender Thomas & Perkins has previously worked with Pentax. It was hired in February 1996 to create a Web site for the company. –with Angela Dawson

Copyright ASM Communications, Inc. (1997) ALL RIGHTS RESERVED