Ammirati Puris Lintas on Friday said it resigned the $20 million-plus Epson America ad account because the two parties were "unable to reach a new financial agreement."
Jeffrey Marks, Epson's director of corporate communications, said the dissolution of the relationship was a "mutually agreeable decision. I would just chalk it up to some philosophical differences we had."
Recently, tension had been growing between the agency and client. Sources said Ammirati had become increasingly frustrated with Epson's multilayered process for developing ads, while the client had begun complaining about Ammirati's lack of attention while also looking to cut the agency's compensation.
Marks said Epson is looking for a shop with a West Coast presence, one that either is based or has an office there. "The distance was a problem," said Marks of the relationship between the Torrance, Calif.-based client and Ammirati's office in New York.
The account involves all media and creative duties, although Marks said Epson would be willing to split the business between two agencies. The review process, which Marks said will begin "immediately," will be handled by Michael Marsak, a consultant with Effective Marketing Strategies in Marina del Rey, Calif.
Ammirati has handled Epson since May 1995. The agency's most recent work for the company's color printers carries the tagline, "You've got to see it in Epson color."
--with Alison Fahey