Shops on Edge For $75 Mil. In Schwab Duties

Charles Schwab & Co. has selected semifinalists in reviews for creative chores on two accounts worth a combined $75 million.
The client, based here, is looking for one agency to advertise mutual funds in print media and another to craft campaigns aimed at women, although it is possible that one agency will be awarded both tasks, sources said.
Shops concurrently being considered for both tasks are Crispin Porter & Bogusky in Miami; The Martin Agency, Richmond, Va.; TBWA/Chiat/Day here and in Playa del Rey, Calif.; Minneapolis-based Carmichael/Lynch; and Publicis & Hal Riney here, said sources.
“We’ve gotten down to a short list,” Len Short, Schwab executive vice president of advertising, said, adding that the company will decide the results in about three weeks.
“It’s an important assignment, and this is an important and substantial account.”
BBDO, New York, Schwab’s lead agency, which was not expected to participate [Adweek, Feb. 14], may also be evaluated for one or both tasks, but its inclusion had not been finalized on Friday, sources said.
Short said the review does not reflect BBDO’s performance: “We thought it was important to get original thinking on how to promote this sub-brand.”
Boston consultancy Pile and Co. is overseeing the review. Skip Pile, chairman, declined to confirm the list.
Shops will meet with Schwab officials over the next two weeks; finalists are expected to emerge in March. Decisions will be made then or April.
–with Angela Dawson and
Joan Voight