Panasonic Down To 4

Panasonic has narrowed the review for its estimated $6-8 million electric wet/dry shavers ad account to four agencies.
Publicis/Bloom, Warwick Baker O’Neill and Hampel/Stefanides, all in New York, plus one undisclosed agency are the finalists, sources said.
Sources said the account includes both media buying and planning, and creative duties.
Before narrowing the search, the client had contacted Fallon McElligott Berlin; Angotti, Thomas, Hedge; Margeotes/Fertitta + Partners; Kirshenbaum Bond & Partners; Berenter Greenhouse & Webster; and Mad Dogs & Englishmen, all in New York, among others, sources said.
Jed Jacobs, vice president and general manager of Panasonic Personal and Professional Products, a unit of Panasonic, would not comment on the review, nor would other officials at the company.
Poppe Tyson here resigned the account in August, citing a lack of commitment to interactive marketing from the Secaucus, N.J., client. Poppe began shifting its traditional advertising work to BJK&E sister shop Bozell Worldwide in New York in October in order to concentrate exclusively on interactive accounts.
Panasonic’s electric shavers compete in the category with similar products from Stamford, Conn.-based Norelco Consumer Products and Bridgeport, Conn.-based Remington Products. The company backed its men’s and women’s wet/dry shaver brands with $6-7 million in ad spending last year, according to Competitive Media Reporting.
Panasonic is owned by Matsushita Electric Industrial Co. in Osaka, Japan. –with Teresa Andreoli