Smith Barney Eyes McCann

NEW YORK Smith Barney is poised to select Interpublic Group’s McCann Erickson to handle creative duties on its ad account after a review, sources said. Estimated billings are $35 million.

The other finalists were WPP Group’s Young & Rubicam and independent Gardner Nelson & Partners, both in New York.

The New York-based client, a division of Citigroup Global Capital Markets, provides brokerage, investment banking and asset management services to corporations, governments and individuals.

Smith Barney launched the review in March, after the incumbent, IPG’s Hill, Holliday, Connors, Cosmopulos, assumed creative duties for the global wealth and investment management division of Bank of America.

Hill, Holliday in New York handled both creative and media duties on Smith Barney. McCann sister shop Universal McCann is expected to handle the media portion of the account.

The client’s current campaign profiles individuals facing life challenges under the banner of “Confessions of Working Wealth.” The tagline is, “Where wealth works.”

The New York-based consultancy, Source Martin, managed the review.

Smith Barney’s director of corporate communications Barbara Glasser stressed, however, that the process was not yet complete. “We haven’t made a final decision yet,” she said.