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Arnold Reaches Anti-Tobacco Finals
BOSTON--Arnold Communications, Messner Vetere Berger McNamee Schmetterer/Euro RSCG and The Richards Group on Friday advanced to the final round of the review for the $150-225 million advertising account of the American Legacy Foundation. Boston-based Arnold, which has long handled Massachusetts' anti-smoking initiative, is partnering with Florida tobacco control shop Crispin Porter & Bogusky in Miami. Messner in New York has teamed with crosstown agency SFM Media LLC/MPG. Richards in Dallas is pitching with Western Initiative Media in Los Angeles. Not advancing was Kirshenbaum Bond & Partners in New York, which had teamed with California anti-smoking specialist Asher & Partners in Los Angeles, among others. A decision is expected in late September.
Virtual Ink Considers 5 Shops
BOSTON--Virtual Ink, a maker of technology facilitating communications between electronic "whiteboards" and personal computers, has chosen five shops to contend for its $5-8 million account. Wickersham Hunt Schwantner here is vying against Carmichael Lynch, Minneapolis, and three New York players: Gotham, Hampel/Stefanides and Angotti, Thomas, Hedge. Pile and Co. in Boston is overseeing the competition for the crosstown client, which has no agency on board.
A&G Cuts Back as Sybase Logs Off
BOSTON---Allen & Gerritsen laid off three staffers on Friday following the decision by business software developer Sybase to move its $10-20 million global account to Goldberg Moser O'Neill without a review. "It is a substantial account for us. We laid three people off as a result of it. It's a tough day for the agency," said A&G official Mary Redington, who estimated that the Watertown, Mass., agency now employs 55. The shop will finish up work for Sybase over the next few months. The Emeryville, Calif., client's new vice president of corporate marketing, Pamela George, had previously worked with GMO in San Francisco while at Intel and Cisco.
Grocery Merger Raises Questions
BOSTON--Food Lion's $3.6 billion acquisition of Hannaford Bros., which owns Shop 'n' Save and Home Runs, is not expected to immediately affect the companies' relationships with its ad agencies, a Food Lion representative said last week. Holland Mark Martin Edmund, Boston, has handled Home Runs, Hannaford's home delivery service, for the last two years. Pedone & Partners, New York, has been Hannaford's agency of record for three years. Ogilvy & Mather, Atlanta, is the five-year incumbent on Food Lion, based in Salisbury, N.C.
Essential.com Ups Ad Spending
BOSTON--Following an infusion of venture capital, Essential.com has increased its ad budget from $6 million to $20 million and is "broadening" its search for a creative shop to include larger agencies, said Kelly Mahoney, who heads up marketing for the Burlington, Mass., provider of bundled utility services.