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GPS Startup Dash Turns to DDB

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LOS ANGELES Omnicom's DDB has won creative and media duties for Dash Navigation, a startup that is expected to launch its first portable GPS-based navigational products in the fall, according to Rick Carpenter, agency president.

"This is a dynamic category and an exciting product that will fundamentally change how people are empowered in their cars," said Carpenter. "We think our ability to provide insights will complement their product. We hope we can make a dramatic difference for their business."

The Santa Monica, Calif.-based agency won a review conducted by Select Resources International, Carpenter said. Contenders and the projected advertising budget were undisclosed.

Carpenter said the Mountain View, Calif.-based company is backed by venture capitalists such as Kleiner Perkins Caufield & Byers, Sequoia Capital and Skymoon Ventures, and that the launch date would likely be set around DEMOfall '06 in San Diego Sept. 25-27.

No date was specified for the start of what Carpenter described as a "full-on" campaign that might include broadcast as well as print and interactive media.

Chief creative officer Mark Monteiro is tasked with leading campaign development.

Dash products are distinguished by their concentration on "timely and relevant local information," according to a statement by the agency.

"We're excited to bring DDB onto the Dash team," said Robert Acker, senior vice president of marketing at Dash, in a statement. "They understand the revolutionary nature of what we have developed and are up to the challenge of translating that into compelling consumer messaging that will resonate with anyone that spends more than a few minutes a day in their cars."