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South Carolina Lottery Hires New Hampshire Shop

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Boston—In the latest South Carolina Lottery development, O'Neil Griffin Bodi has been handed the creative portion of the estimated$7-8 million advertising account.

This fall the Manchester, N.H., shop teamed with Newman Saylor & Gregory in Columbia, S.C., to pitch the state's new lottery business against Erwin-Penland of Greenville, S.C., and Rawle-Murdy in Charleston, S.C.

State lottery officials initially awarded the account to Erwin-Penland, then reversed that decision after an appeal by Rawle Murdy president Bruce Murdy. Murdy essentially alleged that Erwin's victory came as the result of improper scoring procedures.

After a hearing, state chief procurement officer Voight Shealy agreed, saying the method used to calculate cost "did not result in a valid determination of the actual cost proposed" by the review's competing shops.

The account victory, when it came down, went to Newman.

Initially, O'Neil was brought on board on a consulting basis. As the South Carolina Lottery's tense review process neared a conclusion, however, Newman called on O'Neil to deliver the final creative presentation.

The shop leveraged its 17-year history with the successful New Hampshire Lottery to win the lead creative assignment.

By statute, the South Carolina Lottery's kick-off campaign must break by January.

O'Neil has already produced more than a dozen television and radio commercials.

"We had to hit the ground running," said Gary O'Neil, creative director at the agency.

Advertising for the South Carolina Lottery, tagged "Just plain fun," features comedian Thom Sharp, the same actor showcased in the latest TV spots for the lottery in New Hampshire.