Fox Photo Considers Ad Agencies: In Three Markets for New Account

By Trevor Jensen

CHICAGO–A chain of photo processing and equipment stores jointly owned by Eastman Kodak Co. and CPI Corp. is considering three agencies for its advertising account, estimated to be worth up to $8 million.

Fox Photo, headquartered with CPI in St. Louis, has some 450 stores nationwide and is currently without an agency of record. Seeking that status are The Glennon Co. in St. Louis; 360 in Atlanta; and Levenson & Hill, Dallas, said Janice Jenkins, executive vice president of marketing for Fox.

The assignment involves television, print, point of purchase, direct response and media duties.

Kodak last November acquired a 51 percent interest in Fox Photo for $56.1 million. CPI, which bought Fox five years ago, controls the remainder of the joint venture.

Executives for the new joint venture are seeking to brand the chain and promote it as a state of the art processing shop. Fox offers one-hour processing as well as enlarging, reprint and photo customizing services. Stores also sell cameras, photo albums, frames and other related items.

Fox also is introducing a line of more sophisticated photo stores called Kodak Fox Image Center Solutions. At these locations, customers can scan their photos directly into computers, manipulate them as they wish and develop the prints they choose, Jenkins said. Branding these stores will be a major task for the new advertising agency.

A budget for the Fox agency has not been determined, Jenkins said. Agencies involved are being asked to help in that regard, sources said.

Fox Photo’s marketing has been heavily promotional, including a series of contests both in-store and through its Internet site (, where a pet photo contest is now being conducted. Prizes often include equipment from Fox Photo co-owner Kodak.

CPI is the operator of more than 1,000 Sears Portrait Studios units and the 156-store Prints Plus chain, which sells posters, prints and framing services. It reported sales of $467 million in 1996, with $115 million of that derived from photofinishing. CPI spent $17 million on advertising last year, according to Competitive Media Reporting.

–with Katy Eckmann and Glen Fest

Copyright ASM Communications, Inc. (1997) ALL RIGHTS RESERVED

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