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Boathouse Preps 'Bullish' Ads for Merrill Lynch

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BOSTON Boathouse is putting the finishing touches on a Merrill Lynch image campaign designed to illustrate that the financial concern is more than a purveyor of stocks and bonds.

The ads, which break nationwide on Feb. 27, attempt to brand the New York-based client as a multifaceted and dynamic firm with a broad range of services and products.

One spot features Merrill's iconic bull, Dollar, shattering a huge stock-market ticker tape made of glass, which is set out on a prairie field.

Last year the Plainsboro, N.J.-based company spent $16 million on ads; in 2003, the client spent about $50 million, per Nielsen Monitor-Plus.

Boathouse is an independent agency located in Needham, Mass.

James Overall served as creative director on the new ads, which retain the two-year-old "Total Merrill" theme.