Park Place Entertainment last week chose to split its$18 million advertising account between finalists Temerlin McClain and Grey Worldwide.
The decision came more than three months after the Las Vegas-based casino operator saw presentations from the finalists in early May. The third finalist in the competition was Dailey & Associates of West Hollywood, Calif.
Park Place had told the contenders to expect a dual award, sources said.
Both Temerlin and Grey were reassigned the accounts for which they were incumbents. Temerlin of Irving, Texas, retained the business of the Paris, Las Vegas and Bally's casinos and picked up the less than $1 million advertising account of the Flamingo Hilton.
The Los Angeles office of Grey not only retained the Caesar's Palace and Park Place casinos, but also won the plum first-time corporate branding assignment of the parent company, which owns a total of 30 resorts worldwide. The size of that account has not yet been determined, but sources expect it will exceed $2 million.
"We're thrilled for two reasons," said John Crosson, president and chief operating officer of Grey. "Usually when your client is acquired by another company, you're on the short end of the deal. We not only won but got the corporate portion."
Park Place acquired Caesar's, a Grey client, last December.
Crosson also declared himself thrilled with the creative work produced in the pitch, since the Los Angeles has placed an emphasis this year on heightening its creative reputation.
"This was a real creative shootout and Grey is not known for creative," Crosson said. "But [president and chief creative officer] Peter Mooney had the room wowed."
In a separate review, Grey's sister company, Mediacom, won Park Place Entertainment's $25 million combined media budget for all five Las Vegas gaming properties.
A sixth location, Las Vegas Hilton, was sold this summer to real estate investor Ed Roski, Jr. Ironically, the spec creative that agencies were asked to prepare for their pitches was a campaign for Las Vegas Hilton.
The world's second-largest casino gaming company (after MGM Mirage), publicly-traded Park Place reported revenue last year of$3.1 billion.