911Gifts to Relaunch With Leagas

After a quiet review of an undisclosed group of agencies, 911gifts.com selected Leagas Delaney to handle its ad duties.
As part of Leagas’ upcoming initiative, the Internet retailer will change its name and relaunch its site. The agency’s first work is slated to break Oct. 1.
The San Francisco company chose Leagas from a short list of Bay Area shops, said Peter Aronson, director of marketing.
Aronson declined to discuss the media mix or the budget, but industry sources peg spending at about $15 million, including TV, print and online. Agency officials declined to comment.
In the Web world, the San Francisco shop’s chief creatives, Harry Cocciolo and Sean Ehringer, are best known for their humorous work for software commerce site Beyond.com. One ad, featuring a man who works at home in the buff, has inspired various irreverent company promotions.
Since its founding two years ago, 911gifts.com has only advertised sporadically–mainly online, with a few offline ads in spot markets assigned on a project basis, said Aronson. It plans to relaunch this fall as a “lifestyle gift brand” under a new management team, he said. Instead of offering a broad range of gifts, “We will be speaking to the lifestyle of consumers who shop at places such as Pottery Barn and Banana Republic. The selection will be more edited” than other online gift sites, he said.
Earlier this month, the company promoted Hilary Billings to president and chief executive. Billings launched Starwood Hotels’ “W” hotel chain for business travelers and handled retail and catalog sales at Pottery Barn earlier in her career. This month the company announced it received $21 million in its second round of financing.
Billings said the Web company plans to focus on style and quality, with investments in merchandise assortment and packaging, Web site design and customer service.