Lipton Brisk Shifts Media Buying to OMD

LOS ANGELES—Lipton Brisk Iced Tea, marketed jointly by PepsiCo and Unilever, has moved media buying to Omnicom’s OMD, Pepsi’s media shop. The business had been at WPP Group’s MindShare, Unilever’s media agency. The client spent about $15 million in measured media in the first six months of 2002, according to CMR. The shift was made because “OMD has experience in reaching a multicultural audience and that’s where the Brisk [brand strategy] is headed,” said a Pepsi representative. MindShare sibling J. Walter Thompson, New York, handles creative.

Lowe Names New Account Chiefs on Diet Coke, Saab

NEW YORK—IPG’s Lowe U.S. CEO Paul Hammersley has reassigned account duties on Diet Coke and Saab to Steve McCall and Claire Capeci, respectively, following the departure of managing director Howard Portrate, 44, who took a senior account post at J. Walter Thompson (see story, page 6). McCall, 37, previously worked on Diet Coke, Beverage Partners, HSBC and Lego; he’ll now focus on Diet Coke and Beverage Partners. Capeci, 39, who had handled Saab and Diet Coke, will work only on Saab. Each is an svp, account director and reports to Hammersley.

CVS Mulls 4 for $35 Mil. Media Account

BOSTON—Four finalists made presentations last week to CVS for its $35 million media account, sources said. In the hunt are IPG’s Hill, Holliday, Connors, Cosmopulos, Boston, which has CVS’ creative account; as well as Grey Global Group’s MediaCom, WPP’s Mediaedge:cia and Cordiant and Publicis’ Zenith Media, all in New York, sources said. The agencies and client either did not return calls or declined comment. Pile and Co., Boston, is guiding the search.

French Leaves Ogilvy for WPP Consulting Job

NEW YORK—Neil French, worldwide creative director for Ogilvy & Mather in Singapore, has left to concentrate on the consulting he’s been doing for agencies within the shop’s parent, WPP Group, a source said. The move is in preparation for French’s retirement in December. For the past three months, French, 58, has overseen regional creative responsibilities for WPP sister agency Dentsu Young & Rubicam. British-born French has held the worldwide creative director title for the last five years.

Account Activity

Leagas Delaney in San Francisco has been cut from Sun Microsystems’ review for a creative project, sources said. Still contending are Sun’s creative shop, IPG’s JWT & Tonic in San Francisco, and Publicis’ Fallon in Minneapolis. Leagas executives declined comment. Sun, based in Santa Clara, Calif., spends roughly $100 million annually on global advertising. … New York shops Torre Lazur McCann Heathcare, Merkley Newman Harty & Partners, and TBWA\Chiat\Day are among the five agencies pursuing Bayer Corp.’s $20 million diabetes’ products account, sources said. A fourth shop is Gerbig, Snell/Weisheimer & Associates in Columbus, Ohio, said sources. (The fifth could not be determined.) TBWA\C\D is said to be partnering with fellow Omnicom shop Lyons Lavey Nichols Swift in New York, now part of the healthcare network TBWA\WorldHealth. The agencies either declined comment or could not be reached. The client did not return calls.