Dollar Poised to Move Its Account




Rental Vehicle Company Expected to Pull Into Kansas City Agency
CHICAGO–Dollar Rent A Car is reportedly set to move its $15 million advertising account to Barkley Evergreen & Partners in Kansas City, Mo., without a review, sources said.
An announcement could come as early as this week, sources said. Earle Palmer Brown, Philadelphia, currently handles the business, but the client is looking for a shop that is closer to its Tulsa, Okla., headquarters.
Executives at BE&P and EPB referred calls to the client. An official at Dollar said the company was “not ready to make an official announcement.”
BE&P was an initial contender in last year’s review for the $10 million account of Thrifty Car Rental, a sister company of Dollar. But the agency dropped out of that competition for unspecified reasons, and fellow Kansas City shop Bernstein-Rein Advertising prevailed for the business.
Dollar spent nearly $15 million on advertising over the first 11 months of last year, according to Competitive Media Reporting.
EPB’s work for Dollar has targeted both the business and leisure rental vehicle markets by enlisting actor and comedian Chevy Chase as the company’s spokesman. A recent TV spot showed Chase interrupting a business meeting to take a phone call about a scheduled tee time.
The campaign is tagged, “Dollar makes sense.”
Founded in 1966, the company became part of Chrysler Corp.’s Pentastar Transportation Group through a 1990 acquisition. In November 1997, Chrysler spun off Dollar and Thrifty, which combined to form the Dollar Thrifty Automotive Group.
Dollar operates more than 230 independent and on-airport rental facilities in the United States, as well as an additional 370 locations in 26 countries around the world.
Several other rental car companies have shifted agencies recently. Budget Rent A Car, Lisle, Ill., last June moved the creative portion of its $30-35 million account to Publicis & Hal Riney in Chicago. Alamo Rent A Car, Fort Lauderdale, Fla., moved its $20 million account to Foote, Cone & Belding, New York, in December 1997. –with Sloane Lucas