$90 Mil. Toys R Us Looks at 5 Shops

NEW YORK Five agencies have advanced to the visitation round of Toys R Us’ creative review, sources said.

In the hunt are: Interpublic Group agencies McCann Erickson here and Hill, Holliday, Connors, Cosmopulos in Boston; Publicis Groupe’s Leo Burnett in Chicago; independent The Richards Group in Dallas; and Omnicom Group’s DDB in Chicago, per sources.

A sixth shop, IPG’s DraftFCB, also was invited to the next round but declined to go forward, said sources.

Executives from Wayne, N.J.-based Toys R Us will visit the agencies next week. Based on the visits, the company will select three or four finalists, said sources. The agencies either declined comment or could not be reached.

Select Resources International, the Santa Monica, Calif.-based consultancy managing the search, declined to comment.

The incumbent, WPP Group’s Young & Rubicam in New York, opted not to defend. Media duties, at WPP’s Mediaedge:cia, are not in play.

The toy retailer last year spent about $90 million in major measured media, according to Nielsen Monitor-Plus. Y&R has handled the account since 2004. Estimated account revenue is $2 million.

—with Gregory Solman