Agency News

The Interpublic Group of Cos., New York, estimated that the global merger of New York agencies Lowe & Partners and Ammirati Puris Lintas will cost $100-115 million up front, but will reduce annual operating costs by up to $25 million. The bulk of the restructuring expenses stems from employee severance. Some 800-900 jobs were eliminated worldwide, mostly outside the U.S., leaving Lowe Lintas & Partners with a staff of more than 12,000, said Sean Orr, IPG chief financial officer. Other costs stem from lease terminations and the sale of a “handful” of non-U.S. agencies that did not participate in the merger, Orr said. Separately, staffers from the former Lowe & Partners are preparing to move from the Grace Building in midtown Manhattan to APL’s space near the United Nations by late February. Lowe & Partners’ old space will be filled by IPG’s Western Initiative Media Worldwide.
Pamela Larrick, executive vice president, North American regional director at McCann Relationship Marketing Worldwide’s New York office, will receive the Andi Emerson Award for innovations in direct marketing at the John Caples International Awards. Chris Jones, creative director and founding partner of British agency Craik Jones Watson Mitchell Voelkel, will receive the Irving Wunderman Award for his outstanding body of work. The Caples awards event, to be held Feb. 24 at the Marriott Marquis in New York, honors the best in direct-marketing creative work.
Euro RSCG Worldwide in New York has acquired Bikker Communication Group, the largest independent corporate communications firm in the Netherlands. The agency will join Euro RSCG’s Dutch unit and will continue to operate with its current name. Terms of the transaction were not disclosed.
Cliff Freeman and Partners has launched a new national ad campaign for Winstar Communications’, a destination site for small- and medium-sized businesses. The ads show the client’s ability to help businesspeople through New York-based’s business content, e-commerce, community and communications services. They include three 30-second TV spots by the New York agency, airing in 27 markets, with network and cable TV being utilized. Print ads are appearing in such publications as The Wall Street Journal, as well as consumer and business-trade publications. Radio spots and outdoor ads are also being placed in key markets.
Vigilante was awarded marketing duties for Amerigroup Corp., a healthcare company that services low-income families, after a review that included Chicago’s Burrell Communications and The Rodd Group in New York. Vigilante, the New York-based urban-marketing unit of Leo Burnett, will create a national integrated-marketing plan for the New York-based managed-care company. Billings were undisclosed.
DiMassimo Brand Advertising, New York, won a Platinum Award for its branding campaign for The Plaza Hotel at the Hospitality Sales & Marketing Association International Golden Bell Awards.
Della Femina/Jeary and Partners in New York said that it is parting company with the North Shore-Long Island Jewish Health System, after a relationship that has spanned more than six years. During that time, the client’s annualized billings have approximated $3 million.
Separately, Della Femina/Jeary and Partners has moved to expanded quarters, which are located at 220 East 42nd Street in New York.
Harvest Communications, New York, was tapped by to handle its TV, radio, outdoor, print and online advertising. Billings are $8 million.
Chadwick Communications, New York, is launching branding campaigns for new-business wins Computerized Thermal Imaging, IntraLinks and CFO magazine, which in total are accounts worth more than $12 million.
Renegade Marketing Group was named the advertising agency for Internet media and technology company 24/7 Media.
Renegade, New York, will develop a global advertising and marketing campaign positioning 24/7 Media as the premier online advertising network. The $5 million campaign will consist of both corporate and product brand building. Media will include financial and business publications, daily newspapers, radio, and outdoor media.
Badger Worldwide Advertising is launching the first large-scale advertising effort in the U.S. for French hair-care company Phytothƒrathrie. The New York shop’s print campaign, slated to break in the March issues of Marie Claire, Vogue, Elle, In Style and Harper’s Bazaar, was shot by photographer Christopher Kuttner. Ads show a woman with clean-looking hair on a blue background, as well as shots of the hair-care product and the tagline, “Dry hair solution.”
Integrated Communications has become part of Lowe Healthcare Worldwide. The pharmaceutical-marketing agency, formerly part of Ammirati Puris Lintas, changed hands as an outgrowth of last year’s merger of APL and Lowe & Partners. The Parsippany shop, which claimed revenues of $35 million in 1998 from such clients as Novartis, retains its name and top managers.
CommonHealth said it is helping to launch MD&A/Salud, a joint venture between the Parsippany company and Mendoza, Dillon & Asociados, both part of the WPP Group. The new healthcare-marketing group will be based in Parsippany and will leverage the combined equity of CommonHealth and Mendoza, Dillon to offer advertising, public relations and consulting services, among others, to help clients expand in the Hispanic marketplace. Ingrid Otero-Smart, an executive vice president of client services at Mendoza, Dillon, has been named to the additional post of managing partner of MD&A/Salud.
Princeton Partners was named the advertising agency of record for Allfinanz, a provider of technology solutions for the life-insurance industry. The Princeton-based shop will provide public relations and other integrated marketing-communications services for the client, which is based in Dublin, Ireland.