$200 Mil. Nissan Influx

TBWA/Chiat/Day and Omnicom Group last Thursday signed an agreement to purchase Zimmerman & Partners Advertising, Fort Lauderdale, Fla., according to agency founder Jordan Zimmerman.
The deal will provide a dedicated agency for TBWA/C/D client Nissan North America’s dealers and entrench the position of Omnicom and its shops on the account.
The expected move [Adweek, March 22] comes as TBWA/C/D is preparing new ad campaigns for both the Nissan and Infiniti divisions.
Once the Zimmerman deal is complete, TBWA/C/D is expected to shift the roughly $200 million Nissan dealer account to Zimmerman, which claimed revenues of $23 million in 1998 and $140 million in billings .
TBWA/C/D in Playa del Rey, Calif., will retain the Japanese auto maker’s Nissan and Infiniti factory accounts as well as ads for the latter’s 50 domestic dealers. Those billings are estimated at more than $400 million.
Zimmerman is ex-pected to report directly to Omnicom rather than TBWA/C/D and will likely retain its name, said sources. The Florida shop, which previously handled the majority of Mitsubishi’s dealer work, will also be positioned as a retail marketing specialist within Omnicom, said sources.
Bob Kuperman, TBWA/C/D chief executive officer of the Americas and the executive negotiating the deal, referred all inquiries to Omnicom. Omnicom chief executive officer John Wren could not be reached on Friday.
For Nissan, TBWA/C/D is preparing a $100 million effort with a new theme and tagline to succeed the controversial “Enjoy the ride” effort.