G&L Group Will Help Valu Solutions Introduce Retail Cash Rebate Card

By Katy Eckmann

ATLANTA–Valu Solutions LLC has selected G&L Group, Fort Lauderdale, Fla., to begin a U.S. launch of its on-line cash rebate card. The account will bill $9 million over the next year.

Valu Solutions, which is the for-profit arm of the Fort Lauderdale Chamber of Commerce, contacted 120 South Florida ad firms, according to Les Haskew, president of the company. The client received about 20 proposals, then heard pitches from G&L Group and six undisclosed local agencies.

After submitting a 150-page marketing plan, G&L Group offered creative concepts to promote Valu Solutions’ ‘Instant Rewards’ card.

‘(G&L Group) aggressively went after the business and we were very impressed with that,’ Haskew said.

Valu Solutions bills itself as the first on-line, real-time cash rebate card, allowing consumers to accrue a cash rebate at the point of sale and spend it immediately within a multi- merchant network.

The Instant Rewards card will premiere in Florida this summer, followed by rollouts in Texas and California in the next 18 months. Then the card will be launched in one major U.S. market per month for a total of 40 territories, each boasting an ad budget of $3 million.

Haskew said it is ‘very likely’ G&L Group will handle markets beyond Florida.

‘We’re doing everything from establishing corporate identity to designing the card . . . TV, radio, outdoor (and) cross-promotions,’ said G&L president Jim Lobel. ‘It’s our biggest client ever.’

Lobel has been reorganizing the $18 million agency since partner Tom Gallaspy left in 1996. Earlier this year, G&L creative chief Dan Gitlitz moved to The Ad Team in Miami.

This month Lobel hired Shelly Isaacs, who spent 10 years at New York’s Lois USA/EJL and most recently worked as a freelancer and consultant in New York. Isaacs becomes vice president, executive creative director. Another new hire is Steve Saley, a local freelancer who joined G&L Group as creative director, producer.

‘Their talent and their experience will help us grow,’ said Lobel.

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