CarsDirect Taps Kalis & Savage

Incumbent Think ‘Caught in the Middle’
LOS ANGELES–After installing new management last month, has selected a pair of new agency partners.
The Sherman Oaks, Calif.-based Internet car-buying service tapped Kalis & Savage, Pacific Palisades, Calif., for creative duties without a review, said sources. Omnicom-owned Think New Ideas’ Los Angeles office had handled creative, as well as print and outdoor media buying, since the summer [Adweek, June 28].
Broadcast media buying is shifting from Omnicom’s Creative Media, New York, to KSL Media, Los Angeles, said sources. Independently owned K&S only has a 90-day contract with CarsDirect, said sources.
Ad spending has been around $20 million, but a company representative said that may reach $60 million next year.
Idealab chairman Bill Gross recently named Robert Brisco, former Universal Studios Hollywood president, CEO. CarsDirect founder Scott Painter became vice chairman, and Donna Miller marketing director.
“We just got caught in the middle,” said Larry Kopald, president and CEO of Think, Los Angeles.
K&S and KSL declined comment. The client and Creative Media could not be reached.