E*Trade Hears Pitches From 5 Finalists

LOS ANGELES E*Trade Financial is hearing final presentations from five shops vying for the creative portion of its $35-45 million account, sources said.

Agencies contending for the business are Omnicom Group’s BBDO in New York and Martin/Williams in Minneapolis; Dentsu’s Colby & Partners in Santa Monica, Calif.; Havas’ McKinney & Silver in Raleigh, N.C.; and Publicis Groupe’s Publicis in New York and Seattle, according to sources.

Presentations are being held at the Drake Hotel in New York through this week.

Agency representatives either declined comment or could not be reached. E*Trade is expected to name an agency in early October, sources said.

Interpublic Group’s Initiative Media handles media buying and planning for E*Trade, although the client has said it would be interested to learn about the media planning skills of the contending agencies [Adweek, July 14].

Since the spring, E*Trade has been the sole client of Alias Advertising, a 4-6 person self-described “micro-shop” in San Rafael, Calif. E*Trade is currently running a campaign from the shop tagged, “Do more with your money.” The effort combines direct response and image building. The shop is also working on a campaign for the client’s trading division, which is expected to break in the fourth quarter. Agency officials said Alias is not participating in the review and declined to comment further on the search. Former E*Trade agency Goodby, Silverstein & Partners, an Omnicom Group shop in San Francisco, is also not involved.

Select Resources International in West Hollywood, Calif., is leading the review. The consultant declined to comment on the contenders. The client in Menlo Park, Calif., did not return calls.

This story updates an item posted on Sept. 12.