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FCB Lays Off 60

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CHICAGO -- Foote, Cone & Belding here laid off 60 employees, or about 10 percent of its staff, on Thursday sources said-the result of the loss of its Quaker Oats business and reduced client spending across the board.

The cuts had been expected since Pepsi-owned Quaker pulled about $350 million in business from FCB, most of it from the Chicago office, in mid-September. The agency awaited the results of the Boeing review before making the layoffs, which would have been worse had the shop not prevailed in that contest.

The cuts are in addition to the 52 FCB workers who worked on Quaker and have resigned to move with the account to a new agency being formed by Omnicom. Thursday's layoffs are across all disciplines and accounts.

FCB is expected to pick up Coca-Cola brands Dasani and Powerade, but the assumption of those accounts is held up pending lawsuits filed by Pepsi and Quaker. Those suits argue the agency, or certain employees at the agency, know too much about its brands and thus shouldn't be allowed to work for a competitor.

Coke has said it will leave Powerade and Dasani at existing shops Wieden & Kennedy and Berlin Cameron & Partners until the courtroom struggle is settled