Hotline Barnes & Noble Taps Weiss, Whitten, Stagliano

NEW YORK-Bookstore chain Barnes & Noble has awarded a piece of its $20-25 million account to Weiss, Whitten, Stagliano, sources said. The agency bested other New York finalists Angotti, Thomas, Hedge and Mad Dogs & Englishmen for the business, sources said. Weiss, Whitten’s duties include developing brand strategy, image and retail advertising. VSM Media here retains media planning and buying duties. Officials at Barnes & Noble could not be reached for comment.

Saatchi vs. Ammirati for Motrin IB Business
NEW YORK-Saatchi & Saatchi Advertising and Ammirati Puris Lintas here are engaged in a creative shootout for McNeil Consumer Product Co.’s Motrin IB brand. Saatchi’s Healthcare Connection unit and Ammirati will both make speculative creative presentations to win ad duties for the pain reliever, which McNeil took over after a brand trade with Motrin’s former owner, Pharmacia & Upjohn. While Motrin was supported by about $17 million in ad spending in 1996, according to Competitive Media Reporting, sources said Fort Washington, Pa.-based McNeil plans to up its budget to the $25 million range. Executives at the agencies and client declined to comment.

TBWA Retains Bridgestone/Firestone Account
LOS ANGELES-TBWA Chiat/Day has saved its relationship with client Bridgestone/Firestone Inc. by shifting the account to its retail unit, The Persuasion Group. Bridgestone executives placed the estimated $10 million account into review in May. The business, which had been handled by TBWA’s New York office, will shift to TPG’s Chicago service office. TPG is based at TBWA Chiat/Day’s Venice, Calif., office. Agencies including Lowe & Partners/SMS and Kirshenbaum Bond & Partners, both in New York, and D’Arcy Masius Benton & Bowles’ Troy, Mich., office, were contenders for the account.

Compelling Content Pitches Prodigy
NEW YORK-Compelling Content, the advertising and interactive shop founded by former McCann-Erickson executive Marshall Karp, is the fourth finalist in the review for Prodigy Services Co.’s $8-10 million account, said sources. Karp could not be reached for comment. The New York agency is competing against TBWA Chiat/Day, Kirshenbaum Bond & Partners and Warwick Baker O’Neill, all in New York, for the business.

Brandweek Magazine Names New Editor
NEW YORK-Matthew Grimm has been named editor of Brandweek, succeeding John McManus, who is leaving to pursue an entrepreneurial career at the marketing communications firm of Madigan & McManus in Stamford, Conn. Grimm had previously been news editor at Brandweek, where he has worked for the past nine years.