Hotline

Progressive Contenders Line Up
CHICAGO–Contenders for Progressive Insurance’s $70 million account include Foote, Cone & Belding and DraftWorldwide in Chicago; Rapp Collins Worldwide in New York, partnering with fellow Omnicom agency GSD&M, Austin, Texas; and J. Walter Thompson, Detroit, according to sources. The review began after the Cleveland-based client split with Arnell Brand Consulting, New York, saying it wanted a stronger direct agency.
Peebler Named Chairman Emeritus at TN
CHICAGO–Charles Peebler was named chairman emeritus of Chicago-based True North Communications and will concentrate on new business and working with key TN clients, the company said. Replacing Peebler as chief executive officer of True North Diversified Cos. is Valentine Zammit, who also takes the title of president. Harris Diamond becomes chairman of TN Diversified, and continues as chairman and chief executive officer of BSMG Worldwide.
Kmart’s Jeans Line Enlists NASCAR’s Waltrip
CHICAGO–Kmart Corp. broke a new spot over the weekend for its Route 66 line of jeans and causal apparel. The commercial, from Minneapolis agency Campbell Mithun Esty, follows the line’s “urban legend” vein with NASCAR driver David Waltrip telling a story about a hotrod purchased for $10. Waltrip will appear in another spot for the brand in May.
Crate & Barrel Moves Creative
CHICAGO–Crate & Barrel, an 80-store Northbrook, Ill.-based housewares chain, assigned its creative advertising to startup agency Tucker Tapia. The shop’s principals are Jose Tapia and Michelle Tucker. Crate & Barrel does most of its media buying in-house. The account was formerly at McConnaughy Stein Schmidt Brown in Chicago. Crate spends about $3 million a year on advertising.
Needham Rolls Out Degree Spot
CHICAGO–A TV spot from DDB Needham here for Degree Ultra Dry antiperspirant from Unilever features women film directors discussing how much they sweat–“pungent, vicious sweat”–while working, and how Degree squelches the perspiration. Featured in the ads are Risa Bramon Garcia, who made 200 Cigarettes, and Lesli Linka Glatter, who has directed episodes of the HBO show The Sopranos.
Olds Backs Latin Pop Star’s Tour
CHICAGO–General Motors seeks a Latin audience for its Oldsmobile Alero with the sponsorship of pop singer Chayanne’s tour, which opens in Chicago May 16. Leo Burnett here is the lead agency for Olds. Separately, Burnett has created a TV spot promoting Allstate Insurance Co.’s partnership with the Women’s World Cup, the first sports sponsorship in the company’s 68-year history. The commercial, which broke April 12, features young girls playing soccer.