Audi Audition Is On — Lord, Dentsu Has Eye on Account

Lord, Dentsu & Partners is hoping to chase the $30-million Audi of America account with all the gusto that won it the ill-fated Amati division business of Mazda last year, and without hindrance from its connection to half-owner Young & Rubicam, which handles Ford’s Lincoln-Mercury business.
‘We have to be asked first, but yes, I think Audi would be a good fit for us given the team we put together to handle Amati,’ said LD&P chairman Dick Lord last week.
But Lord said it would be premature to talk about what effect the agency’s connection to Y&R might play in its chances.
The agency is known to be in discussions with its two half-owners, Y&R and Dentsu, which could result in a change of ownership, possibly with LD&P management buying out Y&R’s stake. But there are many options being discussed to solve the problem of LD&P’s desire to go after a car account. With that in mind, one source at Y&R said that requests ‘for conflict issues to be resolved’ had been received from LD&P executives last week, regarding the Audi review.
Meanwhile, Audi chief Gerd Klauss last Thursday told DDB executives that they would not be considered in the review. DDB Worldwide chairman Keith Reinhard said he was disappointed. ‘We certainly wanted the chance to restore Audi to its proper place in the market,’ said Reinhard, who had played a prominent role in the Audi creative product.
Other West Coast agencies who probably have a shot at the struggling car company are Stein Robaire Helm, L.A., and Goldberg, Moser, O’Neill of San Francisco.
Other agencies sure to be invited include Ammirati & Puris; Lord Dentsu & Partners; and Jordan, McGrath, Case & Taylor; all N.Y. Also, Tatham Euro RSCG, Chicago; Carmichael-Lynch and Martin Williams, Minneapolis; and Earle, Palmer, Browne, Bethesda, Md.; are expected to be in the field.
Copyright Adweek L.P. (1993)

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