Fotouhi Alonso Associates has won the estimated $5-7 million New Century Financial Corp. account.
The Los Angeles shop was the only finalist left after Bozell Worldwide, Costa Mesa, Calif., and the M1 Agency, Santa Monica, Calif., dropped out prior to final presentations last month [Adweek, March 1]. Select Resources International, Los Angeles handled the review for the Irvine, Calif., client.
"We're delighted," said agency chief executive officer Farida Fotouhi. "They're a great company."
Fotouhi Alonso will develop positioning for the subprime lender targeting the wholesale market, which encompasses mortgage brokers, and the retail market, which involves consumers. The agency will handle advertising and integrated marketing, including broker support materials.
Sources said the client hired an outside marketing consulting firm midway through the review, which may have spurred Bozell and M1 to withdraw.
"We didn't feel we were the right agency for their needs," said Bozell general manager Jim Harrington.
With Fotouhi the only shop left, the client looked at an undisclosed agency outside Southern California before making its selection, said sources.