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McKay Seeks Cash Infusion
BOSTON–McKay Communications is negotiating to sell a minority stake to a group of undisclosed investors, according to agency chairman John McKay. Responding to questions raised by a vendor who claimed he had gone unpaid, McKay denied that his agency was experiencing cash flow problems and said money raised by selling a piece of the Boston shop would be used to fund acquisitions.
McPherron Joins Direct Hit
BOSTON–Direct Hit Technologies has named Meredith McPherron vice president of marketing. The search engine in Wellesley, Mass., recently chose Gearon Hoffman, Boston, as its creative agency, Carat Freeman, Newton, Mass., for media chores and Brodeur Porter Novelli, Boston, for public relations [Adweek, Oct. 4]. The client will soon name an agency to handle its $12-15 million interactive marketing assignment. McPherron’s experience includes posts at Guinness Import Co., including a stint as senior brand manager for Harp Lager.
iXL to Buy Tessera Enterprise
BOSTON–iXL Enterprises plans to acquire Tessera Enterprise Systems, a customer relationship management consulting firm. Atlanta-based iXL Enterprises is the parent company of the Consumer Financial Network and e-business consulting firm iXL Inc. as well as the creator of the e-commerce platform YouDecide.com. The company is buying Tessera to take advantage of the Wakefield, Mass.-based company’s advanced data warehousing and mining technologies, executives said last week. The $120 million transaction is expected to be completed by the end of the year.
Trinity Unveils Prudential Shops Site
BOSTON–Trinity Communications this week launches a revamped Web site for the Shops at Prudential Center. The site (www.prudentialcenter.com) will feature the tagline, “The city under glass,” inspired by the center’s glass ceilings, and offer a purchasing option for gift certificates.
Campaigns Roundup
BOSTON–Arnold Communications client Ocean Spray Cranberries will increase its ad budget 35 percent to $46 million. Some of the increase will go to a new campaign created by the Boston agency for its 100 percent juices formerly marketed under the Wellfleet name. The new tagline: “You know it’s good” . . . Advanced Micro Devices in Sunnyvale, Calif., will put the lion’s share of its $15-18 million marketing budget behind Athlon, a super-fast microchip designed to compete with chips from Intel Corp. A print campaign from Hill, Holliday, Connors, Cosmopulos in Boston breaks this month in BusinessWeek, The Wall Street Journal and elsewhere. Billboards and TV spots are also on tap . . . A $10 million national television campaign to promote CompUSA’s e-commerce site, Cozone.com, has kicked off with an ad featuring San Antonio Spurs star David Robinson, created by Wenham, Mass.-based Mullen.