DirecTV Picks Rapp

DALLAS — Rapp Collins has been awarded a $20 million DirecTV project following a review.

The Irving, Texas-based Omnicom agency triumphed over one other finalist, Publicis Dialog of Salt Lake City.

Sources said the assignment will include television, print and direct mail, targeting consumers in secondary markets such as Syracuse, N.Y.

It was not immediately clear how the new initiative will dovetail with current efforts by lead agency Deutsch/L.A., Marina del Rey, Calif. Representatives of the shop were not available for comment at press time.

Bob Marsocci, a DirecTV representative, confirmed Rapp Collins’ appointment, saying, “We have selected them for a marketing assignment, although we have yet to sign a contract.”

John Jastrem, chairman and CEO of Rapp’s Dallas-area office, declined comment, except to call the account “the biggest win we’ve had this year.”

The DirecTV business continues a growth streak at Rapp, which saw a 66 percent increase in billings last year and the addition of clients such as SBC Communications, Isuzu and J.C. Penney.

Rapp is best known for its direct marketing specialization. The agency currently gains only 15 percent of its annual billings from the production of television, radio and print ads.

DirecTV is the dominant provider of satellite television in the U.S. with more than 9 million subscribers. Its media expenditures last year amounted to $105 million;$32 million for the first quarter of 2001, according to CMR.