Roster Shops Mobil-ize

Mobil has asked three roster shops to pitch ideas for a project assignment for its Mobil 1 line of motor oil products.
Grace & Rothschild in New York has handled the business since 1994 and has been asked for its input, said Cathy Williams, advertising manager at Mobil.
Arnold Advertising, Washington, D.C., and DDB Needham, New York, also have been asked to pitch ideas, she said.
Chip Sleeper, partner and executive vice president at Grace, said his agency will not pitch the business because it has already proven itself to Mobil with its work over the last four years.
Grace produced two 30-second TV spots earlier this year using the theme music from the 1967 spaghetti Western The Good, the Bad, and the Ugly. The ads carried the tagline, “Nothing outperforms Mobil 1.”
Arnold’s assignments include promotional work for Mobil 1 and creative chores for the company’s On the Run convenience stores and commercial lubricants. DDB handles Mobil’s corporate advertising.
The client does not intend to talk to agencies beyond its roster and hopes to select a winner by the first quarter of next year, said Williams.
The Mobil 1 assignment may last beyond 1999, Williams said. “We want to keep our options open,” she said, declining to elaborate.
Mobil spends about $15 million a year on advertising for Mobil 1.
The closed review is not related to the company’s announced merger with Exxon.
Mobil’s competitors in the synthetic motor oil category include Castrol and Quaker State.