Down to the Wire in Bell South/SBC Review

ATLANTA—GSD&M was the final agency to present last Friday in the scramble for the $250 million general market account of Cingular Wireless. Finalists WestWayne of Atlanta and Tampa, Fla., and BBDO Worldwide’s New York and Atlanta units made final pitches earlier in the week. A selection committee, assisted by Atlanta-based consultancy Wanamaker, will decide which shop will represent Cingular, the recently formed BellSouth/SBC wireless partnership that is headquartered here. The competition is so close, said sources close to the review, that BBDO chairman Bill Katz was asked to provide the committee with his home phone number should a decision be reached over the weekend.

Cingular Wireless Puts Hispanic Account in Play

DALLAS—Cingular Wireless has initiated a review for its $20 million Hispanic advertising account, sources said last week. The competition is being conducted by Wanamaker in Atlanta. Candidates for the Latino marketing business are expected to meet with the client this week. Cingular, which had operated under the code name “NewCo,” last week introduced its new identity with print advertisements in Investor’s Business Daily, The New York Times, USA Today and The Wall Street Journal. The ads were created by GSD&M in Austin, Texas, an SBC agency and a finalist in the general market review.

AnswerThink Scales Back Here and Abroad

BOSTON—AnswerThink is closing its office here and cutting back staff in London, agency chairman and chief executive officer Ted Fernandez confirmed. Layoffs occur as the Miami-based marketing specialist consolidates staff and operations after AnswerThink Consulting Group’s merger last year with Think New Ideas, Fernandez said. Sources added that the moves are also driven by a softness in the Internet segment and lackluster new business performances. The Boston office had between 50 and 80 employees a few months ago; a “handful” remain to complete various projects, sources said. Recent layoffs at AnswerThink in London may have claimed 80 percent of the staff, sources said.

Travel Agents Select Top Trade Publication

ATLANTA—Recommend Magazine has been named the trade periodical of choice, according to a poll of travel agents around the country. The survey, conducted by Simmons Market Research, found the Miami-based magazine provided “the most in depth editorial coverage,” “the most helpful information” and was “most helpful in selling travel.”

Spurs ‘Feel Good’ in Multimedia Campaign

DALLAS—Creative Civilization—An Aguilar Agency has launched a new advertising campaign for the San Antonio Spurs of the National Basketball League. The San Antonio agency bought the rights to James Brown’s hit, “I Feel Good,” for an undisclosed amount and created both a blues-rock and a Latin hip-hop version of the song. The “I feel good” tagline will appear in television, radio and billboard ads, as well as on season tickets and collateral materials.