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Olympus Clicks on Seven Shops

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Seven agencies, including Mullen, remain in the running to handle Olympus' estimated $15 million account.

The client is expected to cut to three finalists before week's end.

Five of the seven shops are from New York: Gotham, Hampel/Stefanides, Margeotes|Fertitta + Partners, Merkley Newman Harty and TBWA\Chiat\Day, said Deborah Klein, ad manager at Olympus in Melville, N.Y. The other two are Mullen in Wenham, Mass., and The Martin Agency in Richmond, Va.

Eliminated from contention were New York shops DiNoto Lee, Bozell, Wieden + Kennedy, D'Arcy Masius Benton & Bowles and Ground Zero, Klein confirmed.

The incumbent on the camera business, Kirshenbaum Bond & Partners, New York, is not defending. The account encompasses corporate image and camera advertising, but not ads for digital-imaging systems, which are handled by X.Com in Santa Ana, Calif., according to Klein.

Client executives will visit the agencies early this week, before selecting finalists, according to Klein.

Pitches are slated for mid-May, with a decision shortly thereafter. The review is being managed by Richard Roth Associates in Chappaqua, N.Y.